Bishop Chad Gandiya (centre) smiling after he won the ownership of Anglican Church property case in Harare today. Today’s Supreme Court decision ended the six-year dispute between led by him Anglicans and Nolbert Kunonga’s Church of the Province of Zimbabwe. In the background: Dr Julius Makoni of Manicaland and Registrar of the Anglican Church, Michael Chigore, who served as lawyer representing Bishop Gandiya in the court. (Photo M. Chibaya)

The excommunicated Anglican bishop and head of the Church of the Province of Zimbabwe, Nolbert Kunonga, ultimately lost the dispute between him and the Church of the Province of Central Africa’s Bishop Chad Gandiya, at the Supreme Court today.

Whistles were blown and brows were wiped as elated Anglicans could not control their joy after five years of battling with Kunonga.

Kunonga had taken over schools and crèches, which he has run down since then. 

The High Court threw out five separate appeals by Kunonga’s Church of the Province of Zimbabwe leaving the court to determine the outstanding two decisive matters in his battle for control of Anglican church property.

The feud, largely centered on ownership of properties and characterised by violent clashes especially targeted at CPCA members, has resulted in numerous court cases and political interventions to no avail.

Justice Omerjee Aja delivered the judgment in a court filled to the brim with Anglicans who included minister of Constitution and Parliamentary Affairs Eric Matinenga.

The Supreme Court ruled that Kunonga had overblown the Anglican church dispute over homosexuality “which he elevated to the level of proposing it as a policy that there should be no association by members with homosexuals or anyone who sympathized with them.”

Kunonga withdrew from the church arguing falsely that the CPCA was in support of homosexuality and on August 4, 2007 Kunonga and his adherents “resolved to secede from the Church over the issue of

A parishioner, Amos Mudziwendiya, said Kunonga should vacate “as soon as possible.” He added, “We follow the laws of the country and actually this is notice for them to move out and immediately.”

Another parishioner Kudzai Gandiya of St Michael’s Mbare said Kunonga must vacate. “We want Kunonga and his people to vacate so that we can use our churches. We want them to move out like yesterday.” 

See related materials

Anglicans await letter from Supreme Court

Anglican bishops celebrate court success