PATRIOTIC Front (PF) deputy secretary general Mumbi Phiri has asked Council of Churches in Zambia (CCZ) general secretary Fr Emmanuel Chikoya to concentrate on the Anglican Church and leave Catholics alone.

And Phiri has asked Catholic Bishops to always consult their flock before making embarrassing embarrassing statements on governance issues in the media.

In an interview, Phiri said it was unfair for Fr Chikoya to accuse Catholic PF Parliamentarians of not having the best interest of Zambians at heart with regards to Bill 10.

Phiri further advised Fr Chikoya to restrict his views on Bill 10 to members of parliament belonging to the Anglican Church, adding that Catholic Parliamentarians would sort out their own issues within their Bishops.

“Fr Chikoya belongs to the Anglican Church and there are members of parliament who belong to his Church and whose rules he is very conversant with according to their rules in their Church. I am very surprised that he can say that MPs from the Catholic Church don’t mean well, it is very unfair of him. Why should Fr Chikoya even direct the Archdiocese of Kasama to force the Catholic MPs to withdraw Bill 10 just because that’s what he’s thinking?” Phiri asked.

“Under the Catholic Church, we are always engaged as the Catholic faithful and on Bill 10, I would actually ask Fr Cleophas Lungu who is the general secretary to tell us which Catholics he engaged to talk about Bill 10? Me as a Catholic faithful who belongs to Kalingalinga Parish and under my small Christian community, we have never been engaged on Bill 10. And as the Catholic Church we are a very organized group. When we were campaigning for the cancellation of debt we were engaged, our signatures were gotten from the small Christian community and we endorsed our signatures which were later taken to the Vatican. But in this case, nobody has engaged me neither from the small Christian community and nobody has engaged me from the Catholic Church.”

And Phiri pleaded with the Catholic bishops to always engage members of their faith before coming up with a decision on national matters.

“Fr Chikoya shouldn’t speak for us Catholics, he should speak for his faithful who fall under his doctorate and me I am pleading with our bishops, our priests they should engage us before they go and embarrass us in the media. Because already, there is confusion. The Catholic Bishop, through our Right Reverend Cleophas Lungu issued this statement and we have another statement now from the Archdioceses of Kasama. It’s very unfortunate because the Church from time immemorial has been respected and it has never been a cause of confusion. But because of the porousness of our faithfuls who are supposed to be our fathers, that is why such things are happening like what has happened in my own Church,” said Phiri.

“So let us search ourselves and save this country for the betterment of everyone and let us be truthful because our God sees our inner hearts. Otherwise, Fr Chikoya should talk to his faithful, the members of parliament who are under his Church whom he understands better. He should not criticize the PF MPs because truly, they not engaged and I am speaking because I was also a member of parliament who was nominated and I am yet to hear maybe when I left if any of the MPs were engaged from our Catholic Faith.”