A judge dismissed a bid by two contractors yesterday to stop their trial for criminal negligence over a building collapse at a Nigerian megachurch that killed 116 worshippers, most of them South Africans.
Oladele Ogundeji and Akinbola Fatiregun challenged their prosecution over the tragedy at pastor TB Joshua’s Synagogue Church of All Nations in Lagos in September 2014.
Judge Lateef Lawal-Akapo, dismissed the defendants’ appeal for the case to be dismissed, saying in the Lagos High Court it had “no merit”.
Both are due to appear with Joshua on February 18 to be charged, despite another legal challenge from the popular televangelist and preacher.
Joshua repeatedly refused to give evidence at an earlier coroner’s inquest, despite multiple court summonses.
He suggested the collapse was caused by a mysterious “hovering” aircraft seen over the building before the tragedy.
The coroner attributed the collapse to the unauthorised addition of extra floors to the guesthouse on the sprawling church compound.