Soroti Christians lock church over cleric’s transfer

Monday January 27 2020

A section of Chistians outside the church.

Soroti- Christians at St Andrew Church of Uganda Soroti Diocese in Camp Swahili Ward in Soroti Municipality were yesterday forced to pray in the sun after a rowdy section of the faithful closed the church premises protesting the transfer of a church official.

Mr Collins Ochom, one of the officials at St Andrew Church, said the incident happened during the English service when an official of the church, Mr Andrew Thomas Ogoda, talked about his transfer to Owalei Parish in Opuyo-Soroti Sub-county.

Mr Ochom said Christians were disappointed and expressed dissatisfaction over the circumstances under which their leader was transferred.
According to them, the lay reader’s transfer was influenced by a small section of Christians who want to assume full responsibility and powers over church resources.

“We shall not open that church unless the Archdeacon, Rev Michael Okwi Esakan, who is in charge of the transfers or Bishop Kosea Odongo justifies the reason,” one of the church members charged.

Mr Augustine Opolot, a youth leader, said Mr Ogoda’s transfer was not done in good faith.
“I think the transfer is based on selfish interests, there are people who want to run the church like it is their private entity,” he said.
They did not disclose the names of the accused greedy church members.

By afternoon yesterday, Christians were seen in small groups outside the church discussing Ogoda’s transfer.


Church leader responds
Mr Ogoda said he was not aware that some Christians had locked the church.
“I remember that I was pulled out in a friendly way by some Christians. My attempts to recover the keys were futile as the Christians turned rowdy,” Mr Ogoda said.

Rev Okwii was not available for a comment and neither was the diocesan secretary Rev Sam Ediau.