Sunday March 27 2016

70 churches licensed to conduct marriages


Kampala- A total of 74 Churches of the Born-Again faith have been licensed for solemnisation of marriage activities in the country to ease legalisation of marital affairs.

The authorisation of the 74 churches now brings to 136 the number of born-again churches recognised to officially celebrate marriages.

Government gazetted the churches in three general notices published in January, February and March this year in line with the Marriage Act.

“In exercise of the powers conferred upon me by Section 5 of the Marriage Act, I hereby license the place of public worship mentioned in the schedule hereto be a place for celebration of marriages,” reads part of the gazette issued by Attorney General, Mr Fredrick Ruhindi.

Dr Joseph Serwadda, the presiding Apostle of the Born-Again faith, described the development as a historical event saying the reverence for the Church of Christ has been exhibited by government.

“This achievement is ours together as a body of Christ. We should endeavour to benefit from it and take advantage of the open door that has been set before us. We should endeavour to benefit wholly,” said Dr Serwadda.

He also lauded President Museveni for what he described as relentless support for the churches. While presiding over the handover of the marriage licenses in Kampala, Mr Ruhindi said the move is a testament to government in its service delivery policy.
The deputy Registrar General, Ms Jane Okot Longoya, commended the partnership between the Church and government in legalising marriages, saying the licensed churches were now registering marriages on behalf of government.

“Our partnership will continue to ensure that the churches make returns of all registered marriages to enable us compile a report and develop data center which will help us all to verify the status of those intending to marry as we move to issue single status letters,” said Ms Langoya.

She also allayed fears on the fate of marriages celebrated by churches before issuing of the licences, saying they will be regulated and have them forwarded into the system.

“We ask religious leaders that as you pray for the people, encourage them to register their businesses as a way of formalising their work and hence boosting the economy,” Ms Langoya said.