In the aftermath of the events that led to YouTube suspending Prophet TB Joshua’s popular channel Emmanuel TV, the cleric has reacted to the development, describing it as a “blessing” and calling on his followers to “pray for YouTube”.
“That is the work of God! It is like honey; wherever it drops, insects seek and find it,” Joshua stated during a ‘Partnership Meeting’ held last Friday, April 16, 2021, according to a statement from the church.
“What happened is a blessing. I want you to help me pray for YouTube. Don’t see them the other way around; see them as friends,” he added, stressing that many discovered his ministry through the video-sharing website.
Continuing his message the following day, the cleric added such situations should be “expected” by believers.
“Whatever we are going through is to prepare us for the future… If you want to be strong, you need hard times to be strong. My message to the viewers all over the world – our struggle makes us stronger,” he counselled.
“Every response – take it to God. Every response – take it for prayer. The channel we are talking about, Emmanuel TV, is a Heavenly channel. This is not a worldly channel,” he calmly concluded in a video uploaded to a new channel named ‘Official TB Joshua’.
Emmanuel TV had over 1.8 million subscribers at the time of its suspension and its content had been viewed over 600 million times.
A UK-based media organisation, openDemocracy, said it reported Joshua’s channel to YouTube over several videos in which he prayed for those with ‘same sex attraction’.
In response, YouTube terminated the channel, stating the videos violated their policies on ‘Hate Speech’.
The decision led to an outcry from Joshua’s supporters, who have started several online petitions calling for Emmanuel TV’s reinstatement by YouTube.
The Nigerian-American Press Association (NAPA) faulted Google for the decision, describing it as “discriminatory” and calling on YouTube to restore the channel and “tender an unreserved apology to The Synagogue, Church Of All Nations”.