'I’m not going to be begging for permission to pray' — Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng on controversial vaccine prayer

Chief justice Mogoeng Mogoeng.
Chief justice Mogoeng Mogoeng.
Image: Gallo Images / Foto24 / Mary-Ann Palmer

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng has defended his controversial prayer which called for God to destroy any vaccine meant to infuse the mark of the anti-Christ symbol 666 saying he will not retract it.

Delivering his judicial annual report in Midrand on Friday,  Mogoeng said he has no problem with the controversy his prayer caused and will not retract his statement.

“I will never look back and check who is happy with what I’m saying who is not happy. I am not worried about fictional reputation [which says] this is how a chief justice is supposed to behave. This is how a judge is supposed to behave, where is the manual for that? What are you trying to have us comply with? I’m not a conformist. Our constitution does not demand of us to be that way.”

“Prayer is controversial in SA, insults are not. It is prayer in the name of Jesus that is controversial. All other prayers are fine. I’m not going to be begging for permission to pray. Never!  In public and in private. It is my constitutional right, I’m a Christian, I'm not going to be hypocritical,” Mogoeng said on Friday.

In his prayer during the thanksgiving ceremony to heal workers in Tembisa, Mogoeng prayed against any vaccine which is from the Devil meant to infuse the mark of anti-Christ 666 and corrupt people DNA.

His prayer attracted a lot of criticism on social media as some felt it was irresponsible for a person in his position to make such statements when the South African government is preparing itself to get a Covid-19 vaccine in its fight against the pandemic.

Mogoeng said he never stated it as a fact that there are vaccines with the mark of anti-Christ.

He said all he was doing was to pray for the bad vaccine not to succeed.

 “This is the end times according to we Christians. If there is any vaccine with 666, I want God to destroy it. Any clean vaccine they must produce it quickly, people need that for their health,” he said.

He dismissed complaints that surfaced that his remarks could mislead people into thinking that the vaccine that government ultimately provides is corrupted.

“There is an assumption that whatever people say in the public domain, our people are so foolish that they would swallow it without reflection. I refuse to buy into the narrative that our people are idiots and will embrace whatever Mogoeng says.”

He added that anyone who is aggrieved by his prayer should lay a complaint.

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