No funds missing: Salvation Army

The Salvation Army Church has dismissed allegations of misappropriation of funds and drugs at Howard Hospital and accused its expatriate doctor Paul Thistle of spreading the “falsehoods”.

By the Senior Reporter

The church’s international health services coordinator at its headquarters in Britain Dean Pallant on Friday said a team assigned to investigate the matter had found no evidence of missing funds.

“The Salvation Army is able to report that there is no sign that donated funds have been diverted from their original purpose. Donated goods, falsely reported to have gone missing are all accounted for,” Pallant said.

Pallant, who was addressing journalists at Bumhudzo Hospital Home in Chitungwiza, also denied allegations that Thistle’s relocation was politically motivated and triggered by his whistle-blowing.

“It’s just not true. The move of Thistle has always been discussed for the past two years.

“I can assure you that there has been no political motivation behind Thistle’s leaving.

“There is no indication of political motivation and no indication of fund misappropriation,” he said.

Thistle was ejected from the Salvation Army Church-run Howard Mission Hospital in August after he clashed with the church leadership.

But the move sparked violent demonstrations as the Chiweshe community demonstrated against his forced transfer from the mission hospital.

The church, however, stood its ground and forcibly transferred the Canadian-born medical practitioner.

The church later conducted an internal audit and reportedly exonerated the territorial commander, Commissioner Vinece Chigariro of abusing church funds.


  1. This report by the Salvation Army is simply not credible. Too many other first hand witnesses have reported the funds to be missing. The concept that Dr Thistle had to be transferred and that it was discussed for 2 years also makes no sense. Why would he be transferred against his will to Canada (where there are lots of doctors) with no replacement available for him in zimbabwe where there is a shortage of doctors. Why else unless the plan was to get rid of a whistle blower. There also is no possible alternative motive for Dr Thistle to make allegations that there had been funds taken as this could only make him enemies in the SA. He must have said so because he believed it. The SA has many reasons to hide the misappropriation of funds as this could lead to donations drying up. The best way to bury the truth is to fire Dr Thistle and shuttle him out of the country back to canada. It is tragic as this coverup will only worsen their donation problems as it makes it clear that they are unwilling to be accountable for donated funds.

  2. @Mike- I am inclined to agree. This shoddy attempt at trying to paper over the Thistle issue is bound to put a huge dent on the Salvation army’s reputation. They have chosen to side with the church leadership to the detriment of the community..this is not clever PR at all. No comment would have been the best comment under the present circumstances rather than insult the Salvation Army community in Zimbabwe especially those in the Hospital environs who are suffering the brunt of this decision.

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