St Columba CCAP members fight over President Banda’s cash gift

Misunderstandings have ensued within members of St Columba CCAP Church Praise Team following President Joyce Banda’s K100 000 cash donation.

The president donated the money as a token appreciation to each of the participating choirs during last month’s interdenominational prayers at Sanjika Palace in Blantyre.

But the donation has created turmoil among members of St Columba Praise Team that has resulted in infighting as well as expulsion of some members from the group.

The confusion came about after the group’s executive committee suggested that the money be deposited into the praise team’s account, a move some members vehemently opposed insisting the president donated the money to be shared among the members.Choir-Singing

Some members of the group told Nyasa Times problems started immediately after receiving the money right at the state residence.

The source said the situation turned ugly as members demnded K5000 each forcing the executive committee to seek the intervention of a Mrs. Malongo, leader of Chisomo Choir which is also from the same church.

“Most members were against the executive committee’s idea because they were not consulted on how the money was to be used. This did not please the members who demanded that the money be shared right at Sanjika Palace,” a source who asked for anonymity said.

The source further said the group’s chairperson Collins Chingota, son to St Columba CCAP Moderator Rev Dr. Felix Chingota, took trouble to reason and calm down the annoyed members.

His explanation that the money would be used for their return visit to Kalambo CCAP in Lilongwe proved ineffective to the members before he emotionally gave each member K5000 after almost an hour of disagreement.

The development resulted in the group’s executive led by discipline coordinators Doreen Kaphaiye and Nathan Shaigo Kita expelling Fletcher Matope, Jimmy Kapotera Phiri and Mleza Mnyayi for allegedly creating the confusion and also for being disrespectful.

But Matope and Kapotera Phiri openly challenged the executive that they would continue serving as members of the group arguing that nobody had the mandate to expel them.

The trio also vehemently refused to hand over the group’s uniforms which they had been using.

“We don’t want to be seen as difficult people. Unless they expel any person who received and pocketed the K5000, I will not stop serving the group. I did not apply to be a member; as such, nobody should bother me. The leaders are responsible for all this and they must also respect members’ views,” said Matope.

Last Saturday, other members who included Chimango Mzembe, Tchaka Soko and keyboardist Thom Sinosi appeared before the disciplinary committee for reportedly supporting the “rebels”.

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