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Churches cry foul over stands

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SOME church leaders in Cowdray Park have accused the Bulawayo City Council of being biased in favour of the Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) church when allocating church stands.

MTHANDAZO NYONI
OWN CORRESPONDENT

They made these allegations during a council budget consultation meeting in the high-density suburb on Monday.

Some pastors who spoke to Southern Eye yesterday claimed the SDA had more stands compared to any other church denomination in Bulawayo.

They said in Cowdray Park alone, SDA has more than six stands while other churches have none.

They alleged that SDA has more than three stands in almost every suburb in Bulawayo.

Ambassadors of Christ Ministry International Church pastor, Reverend Andrew Guvheya, said they applied for a church stand sometime last year, but did not get any response from council.

“We applied for a church stand some time last year, but nothing materialised,” Guvheya said.

“If you go there, they ask you whether you are from SDA or not. This is suspicious,” he said.

The United Congregational Church of Southern Africa pastor, Reverend Mlayo Sikhosana, also echoed Guvheya’s sentiments saying they had applied for a church stand in Cowdray Park about five years back, but never got one.

“At Cowdray Park, we applied five years back, but we did not get anything,” Sikhosana said.

“We also applied for stands in Pumula South and Emganwini, but the council keeps on giving us excuses.”

However, Bulawayo Council director of housing and community services Isaiah Magagula rejected claims of bias in favour of the SDA church as baseless.

“People should be honest,” he said.

“Why would they use lies? There is no truth in that. We give stands to all churches equally.”

When asked how long it takes for an application to be approved, Magagula said it depended on the place, but it did not exceed three months.

“When you apply, we take less than three months to process your application.”

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