Defrocked AFM pastor wins reimbursement

HARARAE - The Apostolic Faith Mission (AFM) Church has been ordered to refund a defrocked pastor $10 000 for the refurbishment of a church house.

Richman Muguti, a former pastor at Yobel Centre — an AFM branch in Chinhoyi — was claiming money he allegedly lent to the congregation for the construction of a church house in 2008.

In her judgment, magistrate Olivia Marega said “the respondent is ordered to pay the plaintiff an amount of $10 000 with costs and interests as evidence have vividly shown that developmental progress took over soon after the applicant arrival.”

Muguti claims the church owed him money for the renovations he made at the pastoral house.

The former pastor says he was shocked that the AFM had been shifting goal posts notwithstanding the fact that signatures of church officials were appended on the acknowledgement form which was written as a proof of agreement.

“We conducted a meeting with church board members and agreed the sum would be returned soon after the completion of the building but those same members were dismissing the agreement,” he testified.

In their argument, the church board members, represented by Marko Chivaridzo were arguing that the former pastor was fabricating the matter.

Farai Chitemerere, who is also a member of the AFM, had dismissed Muguti’s claim saying that by the time the defrocked pastor undertook the job, construction was already underway.

“We managed to acquire the land prior to the pastor’s arrival and by then the pastor was just a mere individual with nothing to show off in terms of material stability.

“It is the church that provided everything that is from food to blankets. How could he generate $10 000 when he failed to raise money for his wife’s medication,” Chitemerere asked during the trial.

The case finally came to an end yesterday much to the delight of Muguti who claims that when he arrived at the church it was in a state of disrepair.

“How could a man who owns fancy cars like a Pajero, Mercedes Benz, Mazda 626 and a Toyota Corolla fail to buy a blanket?

“The fact that prior to my arrival there was no development at the church clearly shows my contribution towards the church’s wellbeing,” said Muguti.

Muguti claims that he was fired from the church after he had asked to be reimbursed the money he used in renovating the church house.

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