Council, Vapostori set for clash over open-air worship ban

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Apostolic sect members were part of the thousands of people who gathered at the National Sports Stadium for independence celebrations

HARARE City Council has set the stage for a bruising fight with members of the apostolic sects in the city after it recently proposed a raft of stringent by-laws which include a blanket ban on open-air worship, among others.

BY MOSES MATENGA

The council has already turned a popular shrine used by members of the Johane Masowe church along Seke Road into a vending site.

Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo had approved the proposed by-law and council this week invited members of the public to buy-in into the idea.

Part of the proposed law read: “No person or persons shall gather in an open space for purposes of worship unless a permit has been issued by the council and the appropriate fee paid to the council, which fee shall be determined by council from time to time.”

Council said open-air worship could only be allowed on sites where there were toilet facilities and potable water.

“Where a person or persons intend to conduct open-air worship, the person or persons shall submit an application through the (environmental health officer) to council. The council may or may not approve such application taking into account the provisions of the Public Health Act and the Environmental Management Act and other council by-laws including but not limited to anti-litter and public health by-laws.”

While most apostolic sects sometimes pray during the evening, the proposed by-laws limit them to conduct their services during the day between 10am and 6pm.

Council added: “Any person who contravenes or fails to comply with any provision of these by-laws shall be guilty of an offence and liable to a fine not exceeding level five (5) or fifteen (15) days’ imprisonment or both such fine and imprisonment.

“Where a court convicts any person of an offence in terms of these by-laws, it may order that any expenses incurred by the council in consequence of the contravention shall be paid to the council by the person so convicted. Upon conviction of the person in terms of subsection above, council shall proceed to cancel the permit.”

According to the by-laws, any permit cancelled shall not be renewed until a period of one year has lapsed.

20 COMMENTS

  1. zvaiitwa nguva yaSmith not in this present day of Zimbabwe. Ndozvatakarwira kuti tinamate takasununguka. council marasika

  2. other churches with buildings were allocated by the colonial governments for free whilst apostolic churches were denied church status. Their leaders were arrested and forced to join churches that had come from the West. They soildered on zvakaoma kudaro .Bottle necks were then created to deny indigenous churches to acquire church stands. everyone was happy pakawana nyika kuzvitonga apo vanhu vakatanga kunamata vakasununguka.Satan abva nekupi nhai Zimbabwe.Council must first avail land to apostolic churches before any action is taken.May our mother body ACCZ intervene.VaNdanga vanhu vaye vatanga pindirai

  3. may the council first avail land for these churches first otherwise munoita hondo yemachurch apo tichaona indigenous chur hes invadind building belonging to western churches

  4. this surely depicts the works of the devil. trying in vain to stop the gospel of the Lord. Mwari varikuzviona havo. Nahum 1 v 9

  5. Freedom of worship & movement should not infringe on our freedoms of clean open spaces free of faeces & urine.. Why not just hire portable toilets & water bowsers, hire tents, pay council for land use. Nothing for free in town otherwise go & worship in rural areas. Do not reduce city space to medvial uncleanliness defying modern city health laws

  6. Council leave churches alone.
    Pamberi nebasa maZion Mapositori.

    The council is trying to do the work of Satan.
    Look at where Mozambique is now allowing Gays & abortions.
    #HomosexualityAndAbortionAndUnnaturalFamilyPlanning
    is mortal sin.

  7. It sound interesting. The council has no capacity to remove vendors but has capacity and will do every thing in their power to remove mapositori. Is this not political as well musatanga hondo dzisina basa. Let Us be scientific in what ever we do. is it real that Mapostori ndiwo akaita kuti timwe mvura yesewage untreated water? Is it mapositori arikuita kuti treated water ingoyerera pose pose, is it mapositori again who cause cholera and death of many people in 2008 due to contaminated tape water kana nhasi zvibhorani tinazvo kubva padambudziko iroro. No wonder why we are in this state these people are majors in minor things. Go ahead we still have our vote and we will always use it. Because we see a case of sour grapes here.

  8. kana mavekurambidza vanhu kunamatira panze mavekurasika gwara, even Jesus worshipped in synagouges and also musango he worshipped , mari hatisi kuzobhadhara yekuti tinamatire panze ,never! ivhu ndera mwari ko chasara kutotibhadharisa mweya vatiri kufemaka. all apostols vanonamatira panze tisachisidzirwe please. this are end times hatinamatei mwari nguva duku yasara iyi zvimwe tingawanirwe nyasha namwari kwete ne avo vanongoda mari

    • Matthew 17:24-27New King James Version (NKJV)

      Peter and His Master Pay Their Taxes
      24 When they had come to Capernaum,[a] those who received the temple tax came to Peter and said, “Does your Teacher not pay the temple tax?”

      25 He said, “Yes.”

      And when he had come into the house, Jesus anticipated him, saying, “What do you think, Simon? From whom do the kings of the earth take customs or taxes, from their sons or from strangers?”

      26 Peter said to Him, “From strangers.”

      Jesus said to him, “Then the sons are free. 27 Nevertheless, lest we offend them, go to the sea, cast in a hook, and take the fish that comes up first. And when you have opened its mouth, you will find a piece of money;[b] take that and give it to them for Me and you.”

  9. Bhinikwa you are right. Other Zimbabweans must not be subjected to disease from unhygienic conditions created by theses churches by praying in the open. Traditional churches have buildings which accommodate worshipers and these buildings have toilets and clean running water. Also why shouldn’t they pay for the land they worship on, when everyone else is paying for land everywhere? Its not fair.

  10. I think people need to read the draft by-laws before commenting. Even the reporter should have read the by-laws before writing his story. the by-laws are only saying that these churches need to have a permit for the area they are worshipping and they should have toilets (permanent or temporary). The by-laws also PROHIBIT ANYONE FROM DISTURBING THEM WHEN THEY ARE WORSHIPING!!!! So hapana arambidzwa kunamata. Knowledge is power

  11. A good one Bhinikwa. Kana kuno kumusha vanotoende kwaMambo nejongwe kokumbire pekunamatira, vapuwa murambatsvina ouye kuapegere toilet. Kana zvapera mochiita henyu choto. Ndiri kuti give Caesar what belongs to Caesar. The council is too lenient on them, they construct proper buildings, kwete kuswedza vana nemadzimai pazuwa nepachando chaJune so.

  12. Chimbozviedzai kuMakomoyo, zvekuitire tsvina pese pese, mnoswera mwanyangarika. Zviro zvinorambwawo ngemasvikiro akomana!

  13. Uhwo huchapa uhu ndohusikadiwi ngenzuzu dzemudziiya reChinyamachira, twana tunoswera twatorwa. Nzuzu? Ko iwewe?

  14. Isu tiri mapositori ekwaMugodhi, takatanga zvekutenga mastands kucity of Harare tichivaka machurch buildings kare. Even our Epworth branches have church standa. We saw this coming, ohhh thank u Jesus.

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