Prophet’s Casino Ban Sparks Debate After Divine Jackpot Win

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In an incident likely to ignite heated debate within the Christian community, as well as among gamblers and anti-gambling advocates, a prominent Bulawayo prophet has claimed divine intervention after hitting a jackpot exceeding US$30,000 at a local casino.

Prophet Archbishop Emmanuel Mutumwa, leader of the Johanne Masowe eChishanu Apostolic Sect, asserts that he won after God revealed the winning formula to him in a vision.

However, the celebrations were short-lived for Archbishop Mutumwa, as several local casinos allegedly banned him, fearing they might “pay out too much” to the same winning punter, especially one believed to be aided by spiritual guidance. In an exclusive interview with B-Metro, Archbishop Mutumwa condemned the ban, calling it “utterly immoral and predatory.”

“This is the biggest win ever recorded at the casino. I broke the previous record by almost double, and it was the biggest jackpot won on the site this year. My celebrations were cut short, however, because I have been banned by other casinos for winning too much. They claim that since I am a prophet, I am receiving visions from God about the winning numbers. They fear they will go bankrupt because I will win too often,” Mutumwa said.

“They should understand that if you are playing and winning according to the house rules, the casino has no reason to kick you out. I did nothing wrong. I played a game, was congratulated for winning, and I’m surprised other local casinos no longer welcome me. So, I’m shocked that these people seem to only want people’s money and avoid payouts. I even tried going to their branch all the way out of town, hoping for better luck but was told I wasn’t welcome.

“This isn’t just a loss for me, but it affects everyone who comes to me for spiritual guidance on winning lottery games, at casinos, or placing bets. If casinos can arbitrarily ban winners, what message does that send to their customers?”

Speaking about his jackpot prize, Archbishop Mutumwa said he used his winnings to pay school fees for some children of his church members and to give some church members a start-up for their businesses.

“As a prophet, the winning numbers were revealed to me in a vision. This wasn’t just luck, but a divine message. I saw it as an opportunity to use these winnings as a blessing for my congregation. So, I used a portion of the money to pay school fees for the children of struggling church members, ensuring their education wouldn’t be interrupted. Additionally, I provided some members with start-up capital to launch their own businesses, fostering financial independence within the community. Even basic needs were met as I helped cover rent payments for families facing hardships. This windfall wasn’t meant for personal gain, but to uplift those in need. It’s a testament of God’s generosity, and I felt compelled to share it with those who needed it the most,” he said.

Meanwhile, Archbishop Mutumwa defended gambling, a practice often condemned by the Christian community.

“God works in mysterious ways,” he declared. “This win wasn’t about luck, but a test of faith. I prayed for guidance, and the Lord provided the numbers through a vision. Isn’t it a blessing to use these winnings to uplift my congregation? Gambling, when done responsibly, can be a source of good fortune that can be channeled towards helping others. Many people also come to me for spiritual guidance on winning lottery games, at casinos, or when placing bets. Interestingly, many of them have reported winning much more frequently since seeking my guidance,” he explained.

A manager at a local casino, who spoke on condition of anonymity, explained that betting establishments typically restrict or close accounts of those who win consistently.

“They have real-time data on who is winning. This allows them to employ a little-known strategy of preventing big payouts by restricting or even closing accounts of consistent winners. Once a customer is identified as highly successful, tipping the scales in their favor, operators can limit their betting amounts or shut them down entirely. While it may seem unfair, it’s perfectly legal. There is nothing illegal about it and the right to do it is written in agencies’ terms and conditions,” the manager revealed.

The controversy surrounding Archbishop Mutumwa’s winnings and subsequent ban raises important questions about the ethics and legality of casino practices, as well as the intersection of faith and gambling. – B-Metro