Thursday, August 05, 2010

Mourners chase clergyman for preaching against promiscuity at burial

COMMENT - I wonder if he was paid by an NGO to raise the topic at funerals.

Mourners chase clergyman for preaching against promiscuity at burial
By Ernest Mwape in Mpika
Thu 05 Aug. 2010, 04:00 CAT

A MOB of Mpika taxi drivers on Tuesday booed and stopped Pentecostal Holiness Church Reverend George Chabanya from delivering a sermon during the burial of their colleague, Eubrena Mubanga, at Malambwa cemetery because of his talking strongly against promiscuity.

Trouble started soon after Rev Chabanya began preaching to hundreds of mourners that had gathered at the graveyard that they should not lead promiscuous lives because it was a sin.

As Rev Chabanya was preaching and repeated the words fornication and adultery several times, a mob of noisy taxi drivers rushed forward to where he was standing and ordered him to discontinue.

Some of them shouted; “ulelanda pafya bucende pano. Uyu driver tafwile kulifyo iyoo, bamwipeyefye (You are talking about fornication here; this driver did not die of what you are talking about, but was just murdered).

The drivers, who were earlier on given chance to pray before the burial programme, amidst shouts and whistling nearly caused confusion when they drew a funeral programme that they wanted to run parallel with that of the Church.

Some drivers openly said they were at the graveyard to bury their colleague and that although the Church had ‘hijacked’ the programme, it had not released any transport to collect the mourners.

Sensing danger, Rev Chabanya gave in to the calls by taxi drivers to stop preaching and left the platform amid cheers and jeers.

When he stepped aside and stood at a distance, the drivers clad in black shirts and T– shirts with black headbands took over the funeral programme.

Some of them started burying their colleague and during the confusion some mourners walked away in fury.

After the burial exercise, the drivers asked the Church members to continue with the rest of the funeral programme.

In an interview later, Rev Chabanya said it was unfortunate that people had misunderstood his Bible interpretation.

He said mourners, particularly taxi drivers, did not want him to talk about the evil that was eating away morals of society and that people had wanted him to talk about the murder of Eubrena.

Rev Chabanya said he was merely laying the foundation, but his preaching was cut short by the unruly drivers.

And addressing the mourners, acting Mpika district commissioner Muyangana Mubita described the killing of the driver as brutal and a very sad affair adding that he did not expect such type of a situation in a peaceful district like Mpika.

Mubita appealed to police in the area to deepen their investigations so that people involved in the killing of the driver were apprehended and law takes its course.

Eubrena was murdered last Friday by unknown people who damped his body along a gravel road leading to disused sewage pond, off Mpika-Kasama Road near Lwitikila River Bridge and stole his Toyota Corolla.

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