By Evans Mathanda
Leader of the apostolic sect Johane Masowe weChishanu Madzibaba Emmanuel Mutumwa has blasted permanent secretary in the ministry of information and broadcasting services Nick Mangwana for accusing his church of breaking COVID-19 regulations.
This comes after Mangwana tweeted accusing the sect for violating Covid19 national lockdown regulations which prohibits gatherings of more than 50 people as a means to control the spread of the virus.
“An Apostolic sect group of men and women is gathered for a service at Selbourne Park in Bulawayo this morning. Church gatherings are not yet allowed; Zimbabwe Republic Police has been alerted”, Mangwana said.
In an interview, Mutumwa refuted the claims saying Mangwana was misinformed.
“What Mangwana said was not true, we respect the government and our people. There is no way we could hold services when we understand that gatherings were banned by the government as a measure to curb the spread of covid19 pandemic”, he said.
Mutumwa added that the sect’s volunteers gathered to organise logistics before travelling to Lupane and Insiza to handover donations to villagers.
“The scene in the picture shows less than 10 people to be precise and I was there ready for depature. This is so disappointing because we did not hold any service and we were in Lupane by 10am. We have been doing a lot of donations since the beginning of covid19 lockdown.”, he added
Mutumwa implored Mangwana to issue an apology to his church for misinforming the public.
“We really wanted to pursue the matter in a formal and legal manner, because Mangwana tarnished our name causing unnecessary alarm and panic. However, as a church we agreed to let it pass, God will deal with him and the law shall take its course. And we hope Mangwana will be humble enough to issue an apology and set the record straight”, he added
Mangwana’s tweet triggered debate on social media, with some reports saying Mutumwa had been arrested in New Magwegwe on Sunday, May 31.
In an interview, Nick Mangwana said the public should be informed of any COVID-19 violations when so as to raise awareness.
“The issue was resolved on the same day when I contacted the police from Bulawayo, they even sent me pictures of their donations and I am not even aware that I was Mutumwa but our duty as government is to set our eyes open to make sure that everyone follow the national lockdown regulations”, he added. News Day