The government of Botswana has shut down all the churches belonging to South African based "Prophet" Shepherd Bushiri.
The Botswana Gazette reports that Bushiri’s church, the Enlightened Christian Gathering (ECG), was shut down following the violation of Botswana laws.
ECG allegedly continued the practice of "miracle money", even after being issued warnings to stop.
The use of miracle money, which the Botswana government considers illegal, led not only to the closure of the church but also to a call for all home cell meetings of the church to cease.
However, the church's officials in Botswana are appealing the ban.
The church is said to have been under investigation since 2017 following alleged financial mismanagement among other issues.
On December 6, Michael Mokgautsi, Botswana’s Registrar of Societies, issued a notice of cancellation, with reference to the church.
“I hereby give notice that, in terms of section 11 (3) of the societies act, I have this day cancelled your registration under the said act on the following grounds: 1. Your society has not responded to the notice of the 10th November 2017 in which it was required to show reasons why it should not be cancelled. As per section 11 (4) of the societies act you may appeal to the minister of nationality immigration and gender affairs within 28 days from the date of this letter,” it read.
This is not the self-professed prophet's first run-in with the Botswana government. In May 2017, ahead of his arrival at a conference in Botswana, the government called for Malawi-born Bushiri to obtain a visa before entering the country - an obvious move to keep the prophet out of the country considering that Malawian nationals do not require a visa to enter the country.
Bushiri has also come under fire over the exorbitant fees that he charges his followers to see him. He charged R25 000 for a seat at his table at a gala dinner reportedly held on 23 December at the Pretoria Showgrounds.
Bushiri also made headlines when he bought his six-year-old daughter a brand-new Maserati Levante for her birthday.