NAIROBI, November 15 – A leadership row has emerged within the Africa Inland Church (AIC) with Reverend David Mulei Mbuvi challenging the authenticity of Bishop Silas Yego’s appointment as Presiding Bishop (PB) of the church.
Reverend Mbuvi moved to the High Court under a certificate of urgency on Friday to challenge Bishop Yego’s ordinance as the PB claiming the church’s constitution did not provide for the position of the a Presiding Bishop.
He wanted the court to block the inaugurating of Bishop Yego as the head of the AIC church, which was slated for November 15. But Yego’ lawyer Herbert Ashiruma claimed that Reverend Mbuvi’s ordination as a Bishop was withdrawn in 2006 after he was suspended from the church.
“Rev Mbuvi is not a Bishop of Africa Inland Church-Kenya as his ordination certificate was withdrawn as he was subsequently suspended from active church work in the year 2006,” Bishop Yego said in an affidavit.
Bishop Yego asked the court to strike out the case on the grounds that it was incompetent.
He maintained that he was duly appointed on October 8 in accordance with the provisions of the AIC-Kenya Amended Constitution 2008 at an Annual General Meeting (AGM) held on the same day at AIC Ziwani in Nairobi.
He also refuted claims that he was planning to illegally inaugurate and install himself alongside other members on Saturday.
Rev Mbuvi had claimed that the alleged church’s amended constitution was not approved because some of the church members were not given a chance to air their grievances during the AGM.
“The averments are defamatory and aimed at tarnishing the good name of the clergy of the Africa Inland Church,” he claimed.
Bishop Yego insisted that he had reason to believe that the application by Rev Mbuvi was not premised on good faith and ‘was meant to defame, ridicule and embarrass the clergy of the church without any reasonable cause or justification’.
Last year, Bishop Yego and three other prelates went to court to seek contempt orders against a rival group in what has become an apparent problem facing churches: leadership, property and money.