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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Why I relocated to Uganda - Gospel music legend, Godshield Orokpo

Written By Idoma Television on Thursday, September 17, 2015 | 12:09:00 AM

By Ameh Godwin

“Jihova wahama ma, Ahama no checho ahama” That is the mesmerizing first two lines of his hit song entitled Ahama No checho, that became an anthem among many gospel music lovers in Nigeria and beyond a few years back.

Gospel music singer-turned-Bishop, Godshield Orokpo remains a force to reckon with in the Nigerian gospel music scene. The singer, after thrilling music buffs with his songs left the shores of Nigeria for Uganda where he erected one of the fastest growing pentecostal churches in the East African country. In this interview with IDOMA VOICE, the cleric explained why he relocated to Uganda and other germane issues.

Why did you go into pastoral ministry?
 I did not know that side of me in preaching until God helped me discovered it in a foreign nation.

Do you still have plans of going back to music?
 I still have plans but the truth is that I am so choked by so many activities as a president and founder of a ministry now, controlling Uganda, Nigeria and America. These are where the church is located for now.

But last year, I already started a work in Joe O. Studios in Atlanta Georgia, which God willing very soon can come out with it but I am trusting God to use that to hit the international level now.

Do you still miss singing? 
Well, not much because music, I did not learn, I was born gifted with it, but the pains and struggles I went through in music was such that I did not miss it, instead I considered myself been delivered from the pain and struggles.

How did your kits and kins react to your music career?
 I never for once had supporters from Idomaland. They only love my music but nobody seems to encourage me, if not for God, I could have ended up as a nobody. You know there is difference between been celebrated and been supported? Been popular and been helped? Everything you saw in Ahama was self-sponsored. Also, most of the CDs you see people buy were pirated.

What about Chris Odeje, is he not an Idoma man? 
Chris Odeje was not the sponsor of the video, he was only a director and the man who made my dream of bringing out the first praise medley video in Benue state come true. He gave himself as sacrifice, used his camera and his gift and talent as a director for me to come out with that video but I sponsored everything. One the day of my launching in Otukpo, I got only 15 thousand naira plus a lot of bounced cheques. How do you combine the challenges of being a pastor and a family man?

Pastoral works with family pressure is what I have combined for long now, God has been very faithful.
Do you regret spurning secular music for gospel? 
I don’t think so because I came to realize at last that I am like a sheep taken to the slaughter, or like John the Baptist. The dream of late Tom Aba was to transform Idoma songs from the local to mordern instrumentation before he died and God helped me to bring it in to reality and today all the young ones have now carried it to the next level.

 I mean gospel music. God has a higher plan for me to affect my world not just through music alone, that was why he never planned for so much encouragement at home as to enable me go looking for greener pastures far away. And I am happy today with what he is doing. I was at home recently where I spoke with some upcoming music ministers. They should just keep the fire burning.

Do the right thing and believe in their dreams, it may take time but it must surely come to pass if they faint not.  

What inspired the song Ahama No Checho?
 Ahama No Checho inspiration came when the pastor I served for about ten years suddenly threw I and my family out of our apartment and we lost all that we ever had and we were homeless for three months.

It was then I also realized there may be some forces fighting me from my father’s village. Under that depressed situation I went to the studio to sing a song of deliverance and to rain fire on all the witches and wizards in Idomaland. It will shock you to know that after that I got my deliverance till to day.

How did your journey to Uganda begin? 
Fifteen years ago, God showed me a vision where I saw myself in a foreign nation smaller than Nigeria in that revelation, I was dining with great men of the nation. I initially thought it was musical moves around the world.

But when I began to travel out of the Nigeria to South African nations, East Africa and West Africa, Uganda was one place I never went Until God asked me to leave music and start a church in Mararaba, a suburb of Abuja Now that was 2010,when the church became one year, he told me, I just wanted you to rehearse.

He said now, I am taking you to where I will raise you to reach the world.
So you started in Maraba?
 Yes, the church started in Mararaba, Is still moving on. Precisely, in 2012, God asked me to go to East Africa in Uganda to bless the people of that nation.

That was how without any one inviting me I paid my flight ticket and entered Uganda for the first time to spy the land. From Uganda, he took me to America and so many countries which I wouldn’t on my own have access to.
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