LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)-Paramount Chief Lundu of Chikwawa, is under fire for ordering that Prophet Bushiri Enlightened Christian Gathering (ECG) Church, should stop its operation in the Lower Shire district of Chikwawa. The Paramount claims that the worship promotes Satanism, and that Prophet Bushiri has political ambitions.
Chief Lunda over the weekend attacked ECG during the political rally governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) held at Nchalo in the district.
Lundu told the rally that Bushiri pretends to be a Good Samaritan by distributing maize, while advancing his political ambitions.
The Chief therefore declared that he would not allow the evangelist to build his Church in the Lower Shire; he claimed that the earmarked site was already designated for a Government hospital.
The attack did not please the Church, which through a press statement issued on Monday disputed Lundu’s claims.
ECG Communications Director, Ephraim Nyondo, described Lundu’s allegation as character assassination and which must not be entertained.
Nyondo underlined that ECG will not tolerate such provocations and called on the Chief to quickly return to his normalcy so that he appreciates the gravity of his remarks.
The publicist emphasized that as long as Malawi remains a Republic, not a kingdom, the ECG churches will, legally, continue to operate anywhere in Malawi.
“We, therefore, want to make it clear to Lundu, and everybody who shares his thinking, that Malawi, including the area he (Lundu) operates, is a Republic, not a kingdom.
“We also call on Malawians of goodwill, to speak out against any elements in the country that think they are above the laws of the country. We all have a duty to safeguard the democracy,” said Nyondo.
However, DPP spokesperson Francis Kasaila distanced the Party from Lundu’s remark. He argues that the DPP-led Government is in good terms with all churches in Malawi.
Kasaila said the country’s Constitution provides for the freedom of worship and the DPP-Administration, will do all it takes to ensure that every Malawi freely exercises that freedom.
Some civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and human rights defenders also condemned Lundu’s remarks and said the country’s Constitution guarantees freedom of religion, movement and domicile. They said this guarantee is enshrined in the Bill of Rights of the Constitution.
They said no Chief has the power to act unilaterally with a dictatorial manner over the operations of a church or any institution for the matter.