By Wilber Muhwezi
THE archbishop of the church of Uganda His grace Stanly Ntagali has strongly warned the retiring bishop of west Ankole diocese to stop manipulation in the ongoing elections of members of the new Synod.
Ntagali sounded the warning yesterday evening at St Emmanuel church in Kabwohe while addressing christians of Sheema district in a bid to convince them to participate in the forth coming elections of the Synod and other church organs.
Archbishop Ntagali who sounded angry after Bundibugyo RDC Cadre Mucunguzi told a fully occupied church and bishops accompanying archbishop that Bishop Katonene uses manipulation as one way of suppressing the christians in Sheema district.
“Diocesan secretary west Ankole diocese, Go and tell your boss Bishop Katonene not to manipulate the exercise of elections of the new synod which will kick off on Sunday this week” Ntagali told Aurther Atwine openly who represented Katonene at the meeting.
Archbishop Ntagali also lamented on the fact that the Christians of west Ankole [Igara] wrote to him a letter not to step a foot at the diocese if he dares comes to take over the diocese after no one is elected to replace Katonene.
“Imagine over 200 christians in [Igara]west Ankole diocese to write to a letter warning me not to step my feet in Bweranyangi to caretake the diocese if house of bishops fails to elect a new bishop. This too strange to me however, I have forgiven them” Ntagali told Sheema Christians in a closed meeting which this editor managed to attend.
The house of Bishops has sat twice in June 2016 and August 2016 and failed to elect a new bishop amongst the two nominees Rev. Can Twinamasiko and Rev. can. Amos Turyahabwe.
Ntagali also complained about the christians of Igara for always claiming that he was bribed by Sheema Christians because of the decisions he takes.
“You know that Christians in Igara have always abused my name by claiming that I was bribed by you. This is too bad to perceive archbishop in this perception” Ntagali lamented at the beginning of the meeting.
On Monday this week, the house bishops led by the archbishop visited Bweranyangi[west ankole diocese headquarters] dissolved the synod and all other diocesan organs because they were constituted illegally. They ordered them to constitute a new synod.
The archbishop and bishops noted that after constituting a new synod then a new election committee to elect a new bishop of west ankole will be put in place and then it sits, two names of candidates of whom a bishop will be elected by the emergency sitting of the house of bishops.
Bishop Katonene will retire on Oct. 02, 2016 and Christians in Bweranyangi opposed a caretaker Bishop but those in Sheema told the archbishop and his team that one month is too short to constitute a synod and as well elect a new Bishop.
A lawyer, Abel Kahara told the archbishop that one month period to elect a synod and a bishop is against the laws of the church of Uganda. Bishop Sheldon who chaired the meeting assured the Christians that they would consult the provincial chancellor over the matter and get back to Christians.
In a five hour meeting, Bishop Sheldon Mwesigwa of Ankole diocese who is the acting dean of the house of bishops together with the archbishop begged the Christians of Sheema to participate in elections of the new synod.
Led by Yowas Makaru , Sheema Christians submitted that they don’t trust Bishop Katonene to preside over the elections of a new synod because he manipulated the system last time and led to putting in place a faulty synod.
At the end of the meeting, the Christians in Sheema resolved to participate in the elections on Sunday at the sub-parish and then the archbishop will give the program at the parish and archdeaconry but not the diocese west ankole.