IT is not surprising that Archbishop Telesphore Mpundu is among the people objecting to the creation of a new ministry because he is among the people who have been fighting against Zambia’s declaration as a Christian Nation, the Zambia Republican Party (ZRP) has charged.
Commenting on the Council of Churches in Zambia (CCZ) and the Zambia Conference of Catholic Bishops (ZCCB’s) objection to the creation of the Ministry of National Guidance and Religious Affairs saying there was need for the Church and State to remain separate, ZRP president Wright Musoma said their decision was not surprising.
Mr. Musoma said the decision by the two Church mother bodies was a reflection of Archbishop Mpundu’s stance on the matter because he had been critical of the declaration of Zambia as a Christian nation and has been trying hard to ensure that the declaration is removed from the Constitution for reasons best known to himself.
Mr. Musoma said it was appalling that the same people whose interest government was trying to safeguard had ganged up to oppose an institution that would not only smoothen their operations but also rid the Church of bogus individuals who were taking advantage of the Church to propagate their own selfish interests.
He said it was wrong for Archbishop Mpundu to bulldoze the Church into decisions over issues that he had personal interests in, adding that it was illogical for the church to oppose a Ministry which benefitted them.
He said the level of bitterness Archbishop Mpundu had towards government was surprising for a man who preached forgiveness, love, and tolerance, adding that the Church mother bodies were not doing the country any service by taking an antagonistic approach over the creation of a Ministry that would bridge the gap between the Church and State and was aimed at enhancing interaction between the two parties.
“We are not surprised by the decision of the two Church mother bodies especially that Archbishop Mpundu has always opposed the declaration of Zambia as a Christian nation for reasons known to himself and we are very sure that he is at the centre of that decision but this is not how things are supposed to be. We believe that this new ministry will curb a lot of vices we are witnessing today in the Church.
“Today, we are witnessing wrong things in the Church. The Church has become a den of wizards whose interest is to rob unsuspecting members using magical powers to perform miracles and if it remains unchecked, this has the potential to foster moral decay in our county and it becomes logical that there should be some form of legislature to curb some of these practices,” Mr. Musoma said.
He said it was not right for the Church to be seen to be at loggerheads with Government when they are supposed to be partners.