‘Pastor Ezekiel Is A Generous Man Who Was A Staunch SDA Member,’ Villagers Describe Preacher

Residents of Ngodhe Island in Homa Bay County have come out to strongly defend Pastor Ezekiel Ombok Odero of New Life Prayer Centre, who is currently in police custody following allegations of mass killing at his church.

In his home village, Ezekiel is described as a generous and kind-hearted man, who in the past year sponsored all school-going children in the tiny island, which according to the Kenya Demographic and Health Survey (KDHS), has an average population of 449 persons.

At Ngodhe, Ezekiel was deeply rooted in the Christian faith and was a staunch member of the Ngodhe Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) church, where he participated actively as an ardent pathfinder in his youthful days and later as a choir leader.

The occupants reminisce that Ezekiel had always talked of plans to set up an inclusive church that would not discriminate any denomination under the Christian religion.

He went to the Miwani secondary school in Kisumu before proceeding to the Mombasa Polytechnic.

However, due to lack of school fees, Ezekiel deferred his studies and according to residents, he went off the radar for a short while before he founded the New Life Prayer Centre based in Mavueni, Malindi.

It is however unclear if he underwent any training in theology.

Pastor Ezekiel is fondly known by residents of Ngodhe, his most famous return being on October 10 2022, where he landed at the island with a chopper and mingled with the community.

They called on the government to expedite investigations on the allegations facing the New Life Prayer Centre leader, expressing confidence that he will be vindicated.

The controversial preacher’s parents have since travelled to Malindi.

Ezekiel Odero was arrested on April 27, and presented in court on 28, under a miscellaneous application seeking to detain him for 30 days. 

He is under investigation for several offences including fraud, money laundering, murder and child cruelty.

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