AFM leadership wrangle: Chiangwa underfire

APOSTOLIC Faith Mission International (AFMI) has stepped in to clarify legitimacy issues that have been bedevilling the church in Zimbabwe and recognised Reverend Madawo as the Bona Fide leader, Zim Morning Post has learnt.

AFM International Conference was held at Kenyatta University last week while reports claim that Chiangwa regardless of not being invited travelled for the conference but was stopped from attending meetings.

In a press statement, AFMI threw Rev Chiangwa under the bus by inviting only Madawo to the Conference and it triggered tension between the two rivals.

“The AFMI Conference held in Kenya however gave the AFMI another platform to speak on the developments in Zimbabwe. Prior to the Conference in Kenya, the AFMI had maintained its position by inviting Reverend Madawo to attend the Council of Presidents slated for the 19th of August 2019 at Kenyatta University starting at 1400hrs and expected to end at 1700hrs. The invitation dated 4th  July 2019 was only sent to the Church’s Presidents in member countries and was sent by email to Reverend Madawo.”

“Reverend Chiangwa did not receive the letter triggering complaints from his camp directed at the AFMI,” reads the statement.

Chiangwa mobilized his Constituency and traveled to Kenya but he was snubbed despite his presence.

AFM recognized Reverend Madawo as the president of AFM in Zimbabwe with similar insinuation being made by the then AFMI President Reverend Chinake.

“Without the assurance and the promises, Reverend Chiangwa still mobilized his constituency and with his delegates, they travelled to Kenya to attend the Conference. The AFMI however stuck to their guns and only allowed Reverend Madawo to attend the Council of Presidents on Monday the 19th  August 2019. Reverend Chiangwa was not allowed to attend this meeting.”

“On Wednesday the 21st August 2019, the AFMI once again recognized Reverend Madawo as the Bona Fide leader of the church in Zimbabwe when the then AFMI President Rev Chikane introduced Reverend Madawo as the President of the AFM in Zimbabwe,” reads the statement.

However, Rev Madawo requested to the AFMI that Zimbabwe be observers and not participate in the Council given that the church at home was not in order.

Rev wrote the letter to AFMI advising them of the following facts as they were behind their pulling off from participating in the Council.

“This letter serves to advise you that as the AFM in Zimbabwe leadership, we wish to recuse ourselves from participating in the Council for the following reasons:1. Our house (i.e. the church in Zimbabwe) is not in order.2. The AFMI is seized with the matter3. The matter is pending before the courts in Zimbabwe,” reads the letter.

The Chiangwa led AFM had all along believed that they were the rightful leadership of AFM arguing that they were operating within the dictates of the original AFM constitution.

The split was a result of a cumulation of issues within the church with the Rev Chiangwa led faction citing change of constitution, victimisation of pastors as well as alleged gross inefficiency in the church for a long time.