High Court judge Justice Edith Mushore has urged the factions within the Apostolic Faith Mission (AFM) in Zimbabwe to co-exist pending finalisation of a Supreme Court appeal filed by Reverend Cossum Chiangwa.
Rev Chiyangwa filed a Supreme Court appeal challenging a ruling handed down by the High Court in favour of his rival Reverend Amon Madawo who is backed by former president Aspher Madziyire.
Rev Madawo’s faction of reformers had filed an application seeking to execute the High Court ruling pending the hearing at the Supreme Court of appeal.
Rev Madawo’s faction consists of former president Madziyire, Clever Mupakaidzwa, Briton Tembo, Christopher Chemhuru, Tawanda Nyambirai and Munyaradzi Shumba.
Meanwhile, Rev Chiangwa is backed by Amon Chinyemba, Nathan Nhira, Donard Ndoni, Arthur Nhamburo, Shepherd Sebata and M Mashumba.
Rev Madziyire’s faction argued that a mere appeal did not have the effect to suspend a declaratory judgment. Read the application:
In this application, we seek the following relief, a temporal interdict restraining the respondents from holding themselves as office-bearers of the church, calling any meetings of the members of the church, appointing any person to any position in the church and calling any elections or conducting any elections in the church’s name.
Rev Chiangwa’s faction, through their lawyer Tawanda Machaka, said Mushore in her ruling asked the parties to co-exist pending the finalisation of the Supreme Court appeal. He said:
… the judge asked the respective lawyers for the parties to craft an order by consent which shall regulate the conduct of the parties before the disposition of the appeal at the Supreme Court.
The order by consent to be brought before the judge by Friday 20 September 2019. The judge cautioned against violence and resort to self-help mechanisms and implored both parties to behave in a manner befitting of Christians.