At least 39 parishes under the Anglican Diocese of Upper Shire have appended their signatures to the petition demanding the resignation of their Bishop Bright Vita Malasa on grounds that he is driving the church to hell.
39 out of 41 parishes have joined hands to make their demand for Malasa to leave office, saying the church has turned ‘into his farm’ where he takes everything including financial and human resources as his family estate.
On the current stalemate regarding the position of the petitioners and status of the current bishop of the diocese, priests and Christians from 39 parishes said they are doing everything possible to remove Bishop Malasa from his position because of his poor leadership skills which they claim is undermining the growth of the church.
Addressing the media on Saturday at St. George Anglican Church in Zomba attended by representatives from all the concerned parishes, chairperson of the petitioners, John Awadi said they have followed all legal procedures to ensure contact and dialogue with Malasa but that the bishop was not willing to hold diplomatic discussions.
“Our only hope to resolve these issues was in the Diocesan Synod which was supposed to take place on August 9 and 10, 2019 but the bishop has chosen to postpone the meeting, citing lack of funds as the reason,” said Awadi.
Awadi said Bishop Malasa’s reason for postponement of the meeting was not genuine because the parishes have already raised their targets towards the meeting.
He also said the petitioners have noted that Bishop Malasa is using some tactics to avoid holding the synod because he does not want to be held accountable.
“We will not accept his delaying tactics since the synod is a constitutional requirement and is non-negotiable. We, therefore, maintain our demand that the meeting be held by September 30, 2019, failing which, petitioners will take unspecified action against him,” he said.
Rev. Fr. Dyson Chombo of Kholombidzo Parish who is also the former Arch Deacon of the diocese said they will hold demonstrations and vigil at Bishop Malasa’s house until he resigns if the synod will not take place by September 30.
Currently, 39 parishes have maintained steps of not paying quota to the diocese, not recognizing Bishop Malasa as their diocesan leader and parishes should not take instructions from the bishop and the diocese until the matter is resolved.
The petitioners’ unresolved demands include removing Brenda Maganga from the position of Diocesan Secretary, all boards to be chaired by competent and honest members instead of Bishop Malasa’s blind loyalists, institute forensic audit and stop harassing priests, among many other issues.
The demand for Bishop Malasa’s resignation started early last year by petitioners led by priests after noticing maladministration on the part of the bishop.
Previously, petitioners held demonstrations at the Anglican Diocese’s Headquarters in Malosa, Zomba where they sealed the bishop’s and diocesan secretary’s offices after presenting a petition to the head of the diocese.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :