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TB Joshua dies 7 days before his 57th birthday

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TB Joshua is dead
TB Joshua

Popular Nigerian televangelist, Temitope Balogun Joshua aka TB Joshua, who founded The Synagogue Church of All Nations, a Christian megachurch in Lagos, has passed on merely seven days before his 57th birthday.

The controversial preacher reportedly died from an undisclosed cause, his church said on Facebook.

The father of three was one of Africa’s most influential preachers with millions of television and social media followers. More than 15,000 people from Nigeria and abroad attend his Sunday services.

“God has taken his servant Prophet TB Joshua home … His last moments on earth were spent in the service of God,” the church wrote on its Facebook page on Sunday, without giving further details.

One of the pastor’s lawyers Olalekan Ojo also confirmed his death.

“I confirm that the man of God, pastor TB Joshua passed away on Saturday after his evening programme,” Ojo told AFP news agency.

Joshua rose to prominence in the 1990s at a time when there was an explosion of televangelism in Nigeria and many parts of Africa. He was one of the most followed preachers in Nigeria and [across] Africa.

He was also popular in South America where he had held many religious campaigns.

TB Joshua was known for making predictions and for his claims to cure various ailments and to make people prosper through miracles.

He was, however, controversial, with critics questioning his claims and saying he profited from people seeking hope.

According to Forbes, he had an estimated fortune of several million dollars.

Many African presidents, senior government officials, international football players, musicians and other high-profile guests have worshipped in his church.

In September 2014, the guest house of the church collapsed, killing more than 100 people, most of them foreigners who were in Nigeria to attend his services.

While authorities say the building collapsed because of structural defects, TB Joshua insisted the building was blown up by a small plane that he claimed flew over it shortly before it came down.