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Kitgum bishop goes to court over forced retirement





KITGUM - Tension is brewing in the Anglican diocese of Kitgum after its bishop, Benjamin Ojwang warned the province of the Church of Uganda that his retirement would contravene both canon and labour laws.

Ojwang, through his lawyer Charles Dalton Opwonya , wrote a “strong warning” to the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda Stanley Ntagali to desist from forcefully retiring him from office before his retirement age.

The 62-year-old bishop was due to retire in 2017 when he turns 65 – the mandatory age for retirement of a bishop in the Church of Uganda.

“The summons gives the Church of Uganda 14 days to answer to claims that the bishop is being pushed out illegally,” his lawyer said.

Ojwang became the second Bishop of Kitgum after peace-award winner Bishop McLeod Baker Ochola retired in 2002.

Since the beginning of his tenure, Ojwang has stirred controversies, suing the clergy and dismissing others.

In 2007, he was locked in the vestry of town parish church in Kitgum by a section of Christians who said they did not want him to lead the church service.

Two years later, an uprising against his administration led to the formation of the Concerned Christians Association in the diocese.

“It is this group, led by some priests, that is pushing for the illegal removal of the bishop from office,” the bishop’s lawyer Opwonya said.

Those who want him out accuse the bishop of favouring the Christians of Agago and Pader as opposed to those of Kitgum and Lamwo. They also accuse him of mismanaging the diocese and conflicting with some clergy.

©2015 NenahFM Radio

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