BY MOSES MATENGA
THOUSANDS of devotees from the Paul Ernest Mwazha-led African Apostolic Church (VaApostora VeAfrica) are next month expected to gather for a “holy communion passover” in Chirumanzu in the Midlands province despite a protracted leadership
The church members have been in and out of court with the aged archbishop Paul Mwazha winning the challenges brought against him by his son, Alfred.
Church spokesperson Wilson Rutsate confirmed the gathering.
“It is a holy communion event and we are expecting thousands of church members to come and receive the body of Christ,” Rutsate said.
Last month, the Supreme Court upheld part of a High Court ruling on the succession dispute, where Alfred was trying to succeed his 103-year-old father, saying his takeover was unconstitutional.
However, Alfred went on to preside over a church gathering, claiming he was the legitimate leader despite the High Court order which barred him from holding such gatherings.
The church, through Ernest Mhambare — a reverend with the church — dragged Alfred to court on contempt of court charges.
Mhambare accused Alfred of usurping the archbishop’s powers by calling for unsanctioned gatherings.
Mwazha’s three sons — Alfred, Ngoni and James — together with other church elders, Richard Juru, Elson Tafa, Charles Tekeshe, Lovemore Mharadze, Norman Siyamuzhombwe, Gwatirera Jabangwe and Simbanechako Tsveta were cited as respondents.
Mhambare said the church remained under the leadership of the 103-year-old Mwazha, adding that the respondents were trying to grab the church, which was founded in 1959, using unconstitutional means.
Last month, Supreme Court judges Justices George Chiweshe, Susan Mavangira and Tendai Uchena upheld the decision of High Court judge Justice Tawanda Chitapi nullifying Alfred’s claim to be the successor to his father, describing the move to take over the leadership as unconstitutional.