From LEFT: African Independent Pentecostal Church of Africa (AIPCA) leaders Francis Wang’ombe (in charge of finance), National Archbishop Julius Njoroge (center) and Samson Muthuri unite after a long term leadership tussle in the African Independent Pentecostal Church of Africa (AIPCA) that had threatening to divide the church. WILLIS AWANDU
Wrangling factions of the African Independent Pentecostal Church of Africa (AIPCA) have resolved to enter a power-sharing agreement.
Under the deal, one of the leaders will head the organisation while his rival will take charge of finances.
Speaking at Nairobi’s Panafric Hotel, Archbishop Julius Njoroge and Fredrick Wang’ombe, who formed splinter groups in the church, said they were determined to end the wrangles and infighting by making various amendments to the church constitution.
The leaders had been separately ordained to head the church, leading to feuding among followers.
According to the new arrangement announced by church chancellor Moses Kirima in the presence of the two leaders, Mr Njoroge will be the national leader while Mr Wang’ombe will be in charge of finances.
Samson Muthuri will manage education and training.
Mr Kirima added that other than the new constitution, the church would also create four archdioceses across the country.
“The constitution locked out leaders from various areas therefore we will create an archdiocese in Rift Valley, Nairobi, Eastern and Central to accommodate different groups,” he said.
Kirima added that among the changes in the constitution, to be discussed by the leaders, is the issue of age. Pastors would be required to retire at 65 while archbishops will retire at 70. The national spiritual leader will also retire at 70 or after serving two five-year terms.
Njoroge said the decision to have him take over the church affairs was unanimously arrived at by all the leaders.
“We have agreed that there is only one national leader and in a show of solidarity, we will hold the next holy ceremony, which I will lead, as one,” he said.
The row heightened after former archbishop Amos Kabuthu was forced to hand over the mantle by a court.