MASVINGO – Masvingo High Court Judge Justice Mafusire has ordered the Reformed Church in Zimbabwe (RCZ) to reinstate popular Zvishavane pastor, Rev Innocent Munenerwa that the church’s highest decision making body suspended in May.
Munenerwa who had just been promoted to work at a bigger station at Pamushana in Bikita was suspended for allegedly propagating teachings that are not in line with the Church’s doctrine.
He was suspended for three years through a letter written by the church moderator, Reverend Doctor Ranganai Rutoro.
The order which was issued on Thursday last week also compelled the church to reinstate 1 000 congregants suspended in May after demonstrating in support of Munenerwa. The congregants also accused the church’s top leadership of corruption during the demonstration.
RCZ will also pay Munenerwa’s costs for making the application.
Making his ruling, Justice Mafusire dismissed the proceedings of a Special Synodical Committee that met and decided Munenerwa’s fate. He therefore quashed its verdict.
He ordered the Church to reverse any restrictions, penalties or punishments imposed on Munenerwa and ordered that all his salaries and allowances be backdated.
Justice Mafusire concluded that Munenerwa’s suspension was a bid by the church leadership to block him from promotion to Pamushana Mission where he would get a better package. He said this was bad labour practice.
Justice Mafusire bemoaned the rift in the Church and condemned the church leadership for refusing an out of court settlement with Munenerwa which in his view is the spirit of peace and unity that should be found in any church.
The church was represented by Prius Chitsa of Chitsa and Associates legal practitioners from Kwekwe. – Masvingo Mirror