Archbishop Stanley Ntagali has told politicians who seek to deny Church leaders “their human and constitutional right to participate in all public affairs of the country to go back and study what politics is.”
Like politicians, Archbishop Ntagali has said, Church leaders govern people although “ours is a divine calling.”
He was speaking at the re-opening of the Anglican Parliamentary chapel which was sealed off following the evasion by strangers last year. He also used the opportunity to lead a service to mark the beginning of Lent. The occasion was also attended by the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga.
“When you hear the Church making some statements, how do you know that those are not prophetic statements. God speaks through his people and the Church will continue to speak,” Archbishop Ntagali said.
“We need justice and kindness. Be mindful of people, the youth, children, women and youth as you legislate. Support the Church and the Church will support you,” he urged the 10th Parliament.
For quite a while now, countless figures in Uganda have criticized church leaders for issuing remarks on politics, claiming that there are negative consequences to the act.
Just recently, the Head of State, President Museveni was prompted to call for a meeting with clergy after Rwenzori diocese (COU) Bishop, Rt Rev Reuben Kisembo told him (Museveni) not to deny Ugandans a peaceful transition of power when his current term expires; even as much as he signed into law the controversial age limit bill that dominated the political space in 2017.
Museveni said Clergy should have a disciplined way of interacting, “the country must be guided we cannot afford to make mistakes by anybody.” With is and much more, the church has also been accused of being Partisan.
The Chairperson of the Chaplaincy Council Hon. James Nsaba Buturo said that there are forces that are seeking to divide the body of Christ.
“There is an argument by some that the Church should not get involved in politics. Some others say that we should not speak about what is bedeviling our country. The unity of this country must be debated,” Nsaba Buturo said. “There is need to be cautious when promoting a certain line. It is unacceptable and we must stand together against the forces that seek to divide us.”
Speaker Rebecca Kadaga gave a node to Archbishop Ntagali’s plea to MPs to urge Ugandans to plat trees.
“I heed your call Your Grace that we need to plant trees. In April, all MPs will get seedlings to plant in their areas,” she said.
By Paul W Dennis.