The Supreme Court has upheld part of High Court Judge Justice Tawanda Chitapi’s ruling, which nullified the self appointment of Bishop Alfred Mwazha to lead the African Apostolic church founded by his father Paul Mwazha due to old age.
The apex court nullified all appointments made by Alfred Mwazha and any restructuring of the church’s structure’s that he had done in his purported status as leader.
The Court reiterated the position that issues to do with succession of Archbishop should be done in terms of the Church’s Constitution
In conveying their judgment Supreme Court passes judgment on Justices Susan Mavangira, Tendai Uchena and George Chiweshe decided that the High Court’s decision should be maintained as the note evidently composed by Paul Mwazha didn’t explicitly name Alfred as his replacement.
“With respect the second ground of allure the court a quo controlled, effectively in our view, which the manually written note introduced to it to demonstrate that the Archbishop had picked the primary litigant as his replacement was quiet on the issue.
“The learned adjudicator a quo investigated the text of this note and reached the unavoidable resolution that there was nothing in it which addressed the assignment of anybody (not to mention the principal litigant) as the replacement to the Archbishop.
“The learned Judge a quo can’t be blamed in such manner. Consequently, the second ground of allure stands to be excused.” Justice Mavangira said in her judgment.
Equity Mavangira additionally decided that the congregation authority would not assemble a gathering of Bishops and pick a replacement to the Archbishop as it would be an infringement of the congregation’s constitution.
“I concur with the appellants that provision 9.2.2 of the constitution must be summoned if the Archbishop is missing “by conciliatory sentiment, sickness or passing.” It is really at that time that the Council of Bishops (the Priesthood Council), acting as far as condition 9.2.2, can sit and consider on the subject of progression.
“Without in this manner having made a finding regarding the inadequacy of the Archbishop the learned Judge failed and misled himself in conceding a request for the conjuring of provision 9.2.2. Consequently this is a case where the allure prevails to some degree.”
As indicated by the court papers Alfred had openly declared himself as the replacement to the Archbishop and suspected to have assumed control over the reins of the Church, casting off bed-ridden father.
Ernest Mhambare, who is a respectful in the congregation, had moved toward High Court last year trying to invalidate the arrangement, contending that Alfred had endeavored to usurp the position.