Vapositori beat up anti-riot police

HARARE - All hell broke loose yesterday morning when members of an apostolic sect turned violent, beating up anti-riot police, journalists and the leadership of Apostolic Christian Council of Zimbabwe (ACCZ) for attempting to ban their church.

Three police officers were seriously injured while three others escaped with minor injuries.

The drama unfolded around 11am yesterday when ACCZ president Johannes Ndanga — who was in the company of about 20 anti-riot police officers — told about 300 Johanne Masowe apostolic sect members that he had banned the church for abuse of women and girls among other things.

The members were congregated at their shrine in the high-density suburb of Budiriro 2 in Harare.

Women congregants started wailing while their male counterparts stood up and started singing hondo yewupfumi neropa, mambo weropa.

Sensing that the situation was getting tense, Ndanga, together with journalists and other ACCZ members, beat a hasty retreat, while the anti-riot police built a human wall between the fleeing officials and the church members.

In the ensuing melee, church members assaulted the police as they bayed for Ndanga’s blood.

“Who is this Ndanga? We have one president in the country. We will deal with him,” the church congregants shouted as they chased the fleeing archbishop.

Ndanga managed to run into his idling car and sped off.

The police officers, realising that they were overwhelmed, also took to their heels, with church members in hot pursuit.

A ZBC photographer, who tried to film the event, was also clobbered by the marauding vapositori using their shepherd’s crook. Windows of a ZBC van were also smashed in the stand-off.

Lameck Chitope, ACCZ Harare provincial chairman, was bludgeoned on the head with a shepherd’s crook and sustained serious injuries.

Journalists and ACCZ members took refuge at Budiriro 2 Police Station as the agitated mapostori bayed for blood.

The apostolic sect members, realising that they had created a mini-war, dispersed from their worshiping shrine, leaving bags and their white paraphernalia.

The overwhelmed anti-riot unit called for reinforcements and by the time the Daily News crew left,  six church members had been arrested.

Prior to the clash, Ndanga said he was banning the church for a number of transgressions.

“AS ACCZ we discovered that you denied over 400 children of school-going age access to education,” he said. “There is rampant physical, mental, emotional, psychological as well as economic abuse of the girl child and women,” he said amid heckling from the agitated members of the sect.

The ACCZ president then dropped the bombshell, saying he was banning the church for practising “operation recovery” in which church elders were demanding that all girls married after losing their virginity must be send back to their parents’ home.

“You force your congregants to sell their properties so as to guarantee them entry into what is termed Canaan,” Ndanga said.

“There is severe abuse of church congregants and their families or relatives by way of not allowing pregnant women to attend either ante-natal and or post-natal care from trained medical personnel as this is regarded as satanic.

“You coerce church members not to possess technological gadgets such as television sets and cellphones under unfounded religious claims where Madzibaba Ishamel is calling himself ‘God’.”

Comments (6)

manga muripi pakaripota vamwe nyaya iyi?

belated report - 1 June 2014

Ngavarohwe, hatidi vanhu vane dzungu. Ivo vanga vachimboenderei kunotanga mapositori pachechi pavo. Ndozvinoitwa munhu anoda kuonererwa. Anopihwa tsvimbo dzekwake. Munofunga kuti basa retsvimbo nderei? Basa retsvimbo nderekurovesa nhubu dzakaita saNdanga kuti dzipinde mugwara.

Johannes - 2 June 2014

Rovai mapurisa mapostang"a vanga vachitsvagei vatadza MDC vakuenda kumaPostori ngavarohwe vanyanya kuita dzungu

Collins Andrew - 2 June 2014

The vapositori will dissolve seeing they reacted "unchristianly" to this cause

Daartoe - 4 June 2014

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