THE African Apostolic Church (Mwazha) leadership wrangle has been reignited after a senior reverend in the institution approached the High Court accusing the church founder’s sons of causing chaos and disrupting church services.
This comes as the High Court last year ruled that the 102-year-old Archbishop Paul Mwazha remains at the helm of the church despite attempts by some of his sons and church members to usurp his powers.
In the latest case, reverend Ernest Mhambare has filed an urgent application and cited Alfred, Ngoni, Masimba and James Mwazha as the respondents.
The other respondents cited in the application are Richard Juru, Elson Tafa, Charles Tekeshe, Lovemore Mharadze, Norman Siyamuzhombwe and the church.
All the parties involved in this latest matter were all part of the heated dispute over the church’s succession battle which was settled by Justice Tawanda Chitapi last year.
On December 3, Justice Chitapi’s ruling noted that the purported appointment of Alfred as Archbishop Mwazha’s successor was null and void.
Mhambare claims that after Alfred and company lost the court battle, they appealed against the decision at the Supreme Court and have been causing havoc in the church since then.
“The first respondent (Alfred) aided by the other respondents usurped the powers of (Archbishop Paul) Mwazha, saying that he had been appointed a successor by virtue of a note which was purportedly dictated to Evangelist Kasima by Archbishop Mwazha.
“The actions of the respondents in taking control of the church using unconstitutional means and making appointments and organising organs of the church to their liking, caused me to bring a court application under HC2402/20,” reads Mhambare’s application.
“In the period preceding the judgment and after the judgment, the respondents and their followers have been engaged in patently violent and disruptive behaviour.
“They have taken over the church’s structure and have been influencing their followers to disrupt the church gatherings and places of worship.
“These disruptive tendencies have threatened to tear the church apart and efforts aimed at disciplining those causing the problems have been stymied by a court order which was issued by Justice Phiri which was supposed to be in operation until the delivery of judgment.
“This behaviour has continued and the respondents and their followers feel that they have a right to cause disruption, because they are now following the first respondent,” Mhambare said.
Mhambare is seeking an order that would interdict Alfred and his group from interfering with the church’s activities until the matter has been resolved at the Supreme Court.
Alfred and the rest of the respondents are yet to file their opposing papers to Mhambare’s application.