Straws in the wind? Some good news from the Diocese of Manicaland, Zimbabwe. Fundraising in Lake Malawi and a new election in Northern Malawi

Windy straw!
Blowing in which direction?

Reported in the Zimbabwean online:
www.thezimbabwean.co.uk renegade Bishop Elson Jakazi has lost control of the Diocese of Manicaland. Jakazi has been a companion breakaway bishop with the notorious Nolbert Kunonga of Harare.

‘In a ruling handed down last Wednesday High Court Judge Chinembiri Bhunu said that Jakazi lost his claim to authority over diocesan property when he resigned from the Manicaland Diocese in September 2007.

“Once the first applicant’s resignation letter was received by the Archbishop of the Anglican Church of the Central Africa the first applicant automatically ceased to be an employee or member of that church organisation without any further formalities”.’

Comments that this ruling will have a bearing on self-styled ‘Archbishop’ Nolbert Kunonga’s attempts to cling to millions of dollars worth of property belonging to the Harare Diocese. We have tried to contact former Archbishop Bernard Malango, the one time enthusiastic defender and sponsor of Nolbert Kunonga, for his views on this development but he was ‘unavailable for comment’.

Summing up the judgment Judge Bhuna continued, “Having ceased to be an employee of the church organization he automatically stripped himself of any rights and privileges arising from the contract of employment, membership or his status as a bishop of that church organization”. He also dismissed Jakazi’s application with costs.

Bhunu noted that Jakazi was not dismissed but voluntarily left the CPCA (Church of the Province of Central Africa). “That being the case, he can hardly be heard to complain or cry foul. Any appeal or review which he may launch means he is appealing or seeking a review of his own conduct. This is wholly untenable and illogical such that it must be incompetent at law,” the judge said.

The ruling, unless appealed, effectively puts to an end the dispute over control of the Manicaland Diocese, which Jakazi had continued to claim was under his charge despite quitting the CPCA.

Diocese of Lake Malawi:
Meanwhile it is reported that the newly installed Bishop Francis Kaulanda is trying to raise six million Malawi Kwacha (£27,000 $40,000 €32,000) to make up the financial shortfall in the Diocese and help pay the clergy.

Comments that a comparable sum was expended both flying and providing accommodation for acting Dean Albert Chama and his cohort, the Bishops of Eastern Zambia and Masvingo, Zimbabwe, when they attended the recent schismatic Global South Conference in Singapore, as reported by us 20th April. At the Conference Chama had the temerity to lecture on ‘The potential for economic empowerment’. His own economic empowerment for the exercise appears to have come from breakaway factions in the United States – it clearly wasn’t from the Diocese of Lake Malawi where priests have been unpaid.

Diocese of Northern Malawi:
Another attempt will be made on 29th May to elect a bishop for Northern Malawi. It is not yet clear who the provincial bishops intend to be the successful candidate. Their previous choice Fr Leslie Mtekateka was dismissed for gross misconduct.

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  1. I like your pictures of straw in the wind.

    Which way is it blowing - usual direction self-aggrandisement for the bishops of course!

  2. Anonymous30/5/10

    From; the Rt Rev'd William Mchombo, Bishop of Eastern Zambia

    You must have your heads examined if you can even fail to identify which people went to the conference you are talking about. After all the people who attended had the blessing of the Province. We do not need permission from anyone to attend a meeting any where in this free world.


  3. Dear Bishop Mchombo,

    Thank you for your comments. We are always grateful for feedback and will publish your views.

    However, we must dispute with you. Acting Dean Chama had neither Provincial approval nor the blessing of all his fellow bishops to attend the schismatic Conference in Singapore. He did so on his own authority and by receiving monies from American conservatives both compromised himself and the Province. The monies would have been better used for the unpaid clergy.

    May we quote you in the news published today by the Sunday Post where you are reported as saying: “We must keep on opposing those who ride over the rights of others because of economic self interest”. It is Bishop Chama and those who have been willing to receive monies for Singapore who are seen in the Province as ‘exercising their own self interest’ over the rights of others.

    Regarding permissions and freedom, Bishop Chama in his role as acting Dean is the servant of the Province not the other way round. Otherwise he is acting like an autocrat and it is right that this should be given wide coverage by us.

    Please do continue to keep us informed of any news and or your views.