INFORMANTÈ tracked and identified the woman who is claiming on YouTube that her grandmother was raised from the dead by visiting Ghanian evangelist, Dag Heward-Mills – the West African country’s fourth richest pastor.
She is Elina Nandigolo Shaanika, a resident of Malakia Naakumba Street in Oshakati-West. Her identity is concealed in a promotional video of the pastor on YouTube channels.
The YouTube clip is promoting the powers of Heward-Mills who also visited State House with various Namibian evangelists a few days ago, and Shaanika – through an interpreter – parading as proof that the Ghanaian pastor raised people from the dead on his Namibian visit.
The Informanté investigation can reveal the astonishing co-incidence that Shaanika is a relative of the equally controversial and discredited Namibian evangelist, Elizabeth Sakaria, who in 2013 claimed – before thousands of people at the Katutura Multi-Purpose Centre – that she would die and return from beyond the grave after a few hours.
Sakaria also claimed that God sent her a message that Namibia, on 14 April 2014, would be struck by a fate worse than Sodom and Gomorrah and that fire will erupt from the earth and from mountains that will be felt all over the country.
She claimed that God rejected her pleas for mercy and that a letter of warning was also sent to former President Pohamba.
Now, five years later, a family member is making a local and international appearance on social media platforms being paraded as the daughter of a grandmother who was raised from the dead after eight hours.
Informanté set out to verify the alleged resurrection, by locating, identifying and interviewing the woman who made the claim during the second day of the “Healing Jesus Campaign” at Oshakati. Elina Nandigolo Shaanika, a resident of the Malakia Nakuumba Street, Oshakati-West is now showcased around the world as the most dramatic testimony of the entire “Healing Jesus Campaign” that started at Katima Mulilo on 11 July and moved to Rundu on 15 July before reaching Oshakati on 17 July.
She claimed that her elderly mother died but came back to life eight hours later as the direct result of intense intercessory prayers at crusade.
She was in a joyous mood when Informanté interviewed her telephonically this week, praising Heward-Mills as “a true man of God” and giving details about her mother’s death and resurrection.
She repeated exactly what she told the crowd at the crusade on 18 July, introducing small, but significant variations here and there.
Elina Shaanika was brought to the stage of Heward-Mills who said that he had a feeling that someone might be risen from death, although not at the venue of his crusade.
When she testified on the stage she said that her mother had died at around 15:00 Wednesday last week. She said she discovered her mother was dead as she was about to bathe her before attending the Heward-Mills crusade.
To know for sure that her mother was indeed dead, she did strike her breast repeatedly, poured water in her face and her [Nandigolo’s] daughters shook the bed violently, attracting no reaction from the nonagenarian.
“My daughters and I said a prayer and I left to the crusade because the Holy Spirit was urging me to go, reassuring me that my mother would live,” she said.
As she left, she warned her daughters not to inform anyone that their grandmother had died.
She immediately approached a group of pastors, gave them her dead mother’s photograph and they prayed together for her. Surprisingly, after such dramatic intervention, she declared, ‘I do not know their names,” when asked to identify the pastors.
She said that her daughters phoned her at 22:00 to say that their grandmother had woken up.
Heward-Mills requested that the resurrected woman be brought to the crusade venue Friday evening, but this was not done.
Informanté wanted to know why.
“She is too old and the winter evenings are too cold to take her outdoors,” said Nandigolo.
When Informanté requested to speak to the resurrected nonagenarian, Nandigolo refused.
“She is not in a position to speak intelligibly in an interview due to her advanced age and also because she is visually impaired,” she said.
Although Nandigolo claimed that her mother’s death was witnessed by her [Nandigolo’s] daughters and a sister-in-law, she refused to give their contact details, advising the reporter to rather verify her story by watching a YouTube video.
However, it was only a matter of hours before Nandigolo changed her mind.
“Please do not publish the story. It is a family matter. I have spoken to family elders and the current consensus is that nothing be written about it,” she said.
Her husband, who is a fairly senior Defence Force official, said: “Yes, I heard something like that but I do not have full details because I am not in Oshakati.”