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Mombasa ACK clergy wars spill into court

Sophie Njoka @PeopleDailyKe

Consecration of the new Anglican Church of Kenya (ACK) bishop for Mombasa diocese Rev Alphonse Mwaro Baya is now in limbo after six clergymen filed a case challenging his election.

The six petitioners asked the court to bar Archbishop Jackson ole Sapit from confirming Rev Baya as the bishop-elect claiming the election was biased and unfair. Baya is a lecturer at Bishop Hanington institute of theology and development studies in Mombasa.

Yesterday, Mombasa senior resident magistrate Martin Rabera ordered the plaintiff in the matter to file and serve an amended application, within the next five days, seeking to stop the swearing-in of Baya until the petition is heard and determined.

Through their lawyer Wandai Matheka, reverends Emmanuel Wanje (Bamburi), George Gona (Administrative secretary), Tom Komora (Kiembeni), Nelson Mwangiri (Msambweni), Chrispus Ngowa (Ukunda) and Samuel Baha (Ukunda) have sued Baya, the outgoing bishop Julius Kalu and Ole Sapit.

They argued that the election of the bishopric position was marred by irregularities which included irregular appointment of search committee, lobbying and favouritism.

The plaintiffs claimed that during the ordinary session of the diocesan full synod on May 11, Baya circulated names through text messages and mobilised members of the synod to elect specific members to the standing committee, who would later constitute members of the electoral college who voted in his favour.

“The defendants actions were deliberately to give himself a direct win, since the first defendants actions were laced with ill motive, bad faith and was unjustified, illegal null and void,” said Matheka.

The complainants are seeking orders for the nullification of the elections and dissolution of the current search committee in accordance with the provisions of the constitution of the Anglican Church of Kenya. The case will be heard on December 15.

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