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We’ll go for Muslims, Hindus to know their agenda in Zambia – Religion ministerBy Mukosha Funga on 22 May 2017
In this audio, Minister of Religious Affairs and National Guidance Rev Godfridah Sumaili says her ministry will extend the scrutiny of fake prophets to the Muslims and Hindus.
And Rev Sumaili says Hakainde Hichilema has found himself in detention because he pushed President Edgar Lungu against the wall for a long time.
Featuring on Zambia Blog Talk Radio, Rev Sumaili said Muslims and Hindus will also have to explain “what they are doing in the Zambia”.
When programme host asked the minister why she was only interested in chasing away fake Christian prophets from the country, leaving out other religions, Rev Sumaili said her ministry would not leave out anyone.
“Although Zambia is a Christian Nation, this Ministry is called National Guidance and Religious Affairs meaning that there is room for the other religions, they have the freedom to worship their God and even last week, I had a meeting with the Islamic Association of Zambia. Yes, we intend to work with these other religions. One, we need to know what they are doing in Zambia. We need to know their strategies, we need to have data on these ones, we need to make sure that they are law abiding so we are working with all the religious faiths,” Rev Sumaili said.
She insisted that anyone masquerading as a Christian would be uprooted.
“You may say that we are being so hard on the Christians, we are laying the foundation and we are a Christian nation so anything that is a counterfeit to Christianity, anything that is masquerading as Christian, we have to uproot it. So we allow people to worship their God but we will allow people to put order to their Christian faith while we are also looking at all the other religions. We are not going to allow counterfeit Christianity; that we are saying no! Let us preach the true gospel of Jesus Christ,” she said.
Rev Sumaili said it was the responsibility of Church mother bodies to ensure that Christian religious institutions were under sober leadership and accounted for their resources transparently.
“This is the work of the Church mother bodies to ensure that there is good governance in our churches, there’s integrity that the resources in the churches are transparently managed and that there is accountability. We are not going to allow arrogant law-breakers who are not respecting the laws of the land and there is no country that can allow that,” she said.
“The vision that I have for the ministry is the vision of government concerning the Ministry of Guidance and Religious Affairs. Firstly, we have to actualize the declaration of Zambia as a Christian nation and that is what I would like to see; that Christianity becomes our way of life and our culture. We must walk and talk like Christ.”
Rev Sumaili noted that her ministry had no proper legislation in place for regulating religious institutions.
“Yes, you are very right. We need a legal framework, we need to come up with a bill and we are already working on that. This Bill should give guidelines in registrations, permits and also, we will be very specific in terms of the authority and powers that we shall have as a ministry because right now, a lot of things are being done through the Ministry of Home Affairs because the mandate is with them. So we need that Act which shall empower us and even that committee that I talked about coming from the church mother bodies, we also need to make sure that they are in that Act so that we have the legal backing,” she said.
And when she was asked what her message was to incarcerated UPND leader, Rev Sumaili struggled before saying HH pushed the Head of State against the wall by refusing to recognizing him.
“You know, there is so much talk, there is so much tension, there is this there is that. I know that there are a lot of things that we have to deal with, I know that a national leader has been incarcerated and I know that obviously the followers are…yeah that’s… we are aware of that. The first thing I want to say is that we need to pray as Zambians, there is nothing that God cannot answer. We [must] pray for restoration, for peace, for reconciliation for unity, I think that is very important,” said Sumaili.
“But also, when a leader is elected by the people, we need to respect that. What has caused all this is that refusal to acknowledge the election of President Edgar Chagwa Lungu and he (President Lungu) was patient, he has not been rough, he had to be pushed and pushed to the wall. I mean, now it becomes a court case and now, we need to allow another arm of the government with powers, regulations and authority. You cannot start jumping to say ‘no, release him’. No, let it take its course. All we can do is to pray for peace, for our leaders for reconciliation. And if I was to see HH now, I would tell him that ‘God loves you and he has a plan for you in our nation. I would advise him, guide him to be humble and wait for your time and trust in God’. That’s what I would say.”
Listen to the full programme on Zambian Blog Talk Radio:
About Mukosha Funga
Mukosha Funga is a Zambian journalist interested in good governance and anti corruption reporting.
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