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YouTube blocks Nigerian televangelist over videos claiming to 'cure' gay church members

YouTube blocks Nigerian televangelist over videos claiming to 'cure' gay church members
© BRIDGET BENNETT/AFP via Getty Images

YouTube has suspended a popular Nigerian televangelist’s account over videos claiming that he has “cured" openly gay members of his congregation, CNN reported.

The U.K.-based media rights group OpenDemocracy told CNN that they had alerted YouTube to the videos, asking if they violated YouTube polices. 

The videos were made for T.B. Joshua, pastor of “T.B. Joshua Ministries.”

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"We noticed at least seven videos. In one video, T.B. Joshua slapped a woman and her partner whom he called her 'second' [partner] at least 16 times," OpenDemocracy’s Africa Editor Lydia Namubiru said to CNN. 

Nambiru said that Joshua was casting “the spirit of woman” out of her in the videos, according to CNN. 

Joshua runs a YouTube channel called The Synagogue, Church of All Nations (SCOAN), which before being suspended had more than 2 million subscribers. 

Joshua is already protesting his suspension from YouTube in a series of Facebook posts. In the posts, he asks his supporters to post their protests of his suspension on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media. 

“Good Morning! I want to salute our viewers all over the world. I got to know what happened to YouTube when I saw the viewers complaining. That is the work of God! It is like honey. Wherever it drops, insects seek and find it. What happened is a blessing. I want you to help me pray for YouTube. Pray for them! Don’t see them the other way around; see them as friends. We need to be strong. Be strong,” Joshua said in his post. 

Joshua also said he will appeal his YouTube suspension. 

Joshua, who gained popularity in the last 1990s for his sermons, also faced scrutiny after a SCOAN building collapsed in 2014, killing more than 100 people.