By Spy Uganda
It is a moment of confusion at Namirembe Diocese where the House of Bishops have rejected the nominated candidates; Rev Moses Banja and Rev Abraham Muyinda citing fraudulent nomination.
According to reports, the two were fraudulently fronted by the Chancellor of Namirembe Diocese Mr Frederick Mpanga to replace the outgoing Bishop Wilberforce Kityo Luwalira who has been Bishop of Namirembe since 2009.
“Lawyer Mpanga of AF Mpanga Advocates as Chancellor heads the nomination committee but had instead turned it into an endorsement camp of his preferred candidate Moses Banja. Muyinda had been smuggled in at the last hour to provide a semblance of the election, as he didn’t originally apply during the call for applications,” reports quote members of the House of Bishops as saying.
The House of Bishops is said to have sat on Thursday under tight security and reviewed evidence provided by the elders in their petition and sampled phone calls using a loudspeaker to all the committee members.
“Ten of the 13 committee members that attended the Saturday meeting at Kings College Budo confirmed having not elected Banja and Muyinda and had rejected Mpanga’s decision to simply select two people and have the committee endorse them,” adds the report.
The elders say Mpanga had promised to call for another meeting but instead forwarded names to the House of Bishops chaired by Archbishop Kaziimba Mugalu prompting the elders to sign a petition against this move.
With that evidence, the House of Bishops concluded that the process needs to be repeated, but with Mpanga not as committee chair.
Luwalira will retire on December 8, 2023, on clocking 65 years, after 14 years at the helm of Namirembe Diocese.
Luwalira, who rose from grass to grace, is credited with extending the church closer to the believers, superintending the starting of new churches and archdeaconries, refurbishing Namirembe cathedral, a project that cost over Shs 3 billion, and establishing Namirembe FM, among other projects.
To become a bishop of Namirembe diocese, he must have a degree in theology or divinity on top of serving 10 years in the priesthood. The 10 years are determined from the time the priest was ordained. The other criteria include track record, management skills, behaviour, and others.