Wednesday, 03 June 2009 19:28
A Kampala pastor has accused colleagues of amassing material wealth while paying a deaf ear to social vices that threaten to rip apart Pentecostal churches in Uganda. Pastor Michael Kyazze, Head of Discipline in the National Fellowship of Born Again Pentecostal Churches of Uganda, says Kampala is a city of hundreds of clergymen competing to drive posh cars and wear expensive suits while sodomy gets firmly entrenched in born-again churches.
“Kampala is a city of clergies with about 700 pastors but where are they when we want them to clean the church? Why are they silent about the plight of boys who have fallen victim in a system we are serving?” asked Kyazze.
The Omega Healing Centre pastor who said that what he was revealing was “an edited version” of the decay in the church, added: “I cry for Uganda where the insignificant have no one to defend them. I am ashamed of the pastors in this nation…I have seen people with cars, suits, who go to radio programmes and ask for tithe but I haven’t seen people with hearts.”
He said that most of the boys who are reportedly sodomised by church leaders are children picked from the streets seeking help, “only to be abused by people in institutions meant to give them hope.”
He appealed to pastors involved in the vice to repent. “Headmasters, students…have all confessed; now we want pastors to confess [their sins],” he said.
Kyazze made the remarks last Sunday while preaching at his Omega Healing Centre on Entebbe Road.
Kyazze, one of the pastors to accuse Pastor Robert Kayanja of Rubaga Miracle Centre of sexually abusing boys, has been out of the country for about two months.
He appeared before the CID Police to substantiate his claims against Kayanja early this week.
His colleagues; Solomon Male, Martin Ssempa and Bob Kayiira have since recorded their statements but have accused the Police of bias.
Kyazze said preachers who are afraid to speak out against sodomy should quit ministry.
“Since I came, some of them have been calling me whispering on phones. If they are cowards who can’t speak the truth, they should leave the Bible. It is an irony that they fear yet most of them boast of great powers.”
He claimed that the issue of sodomy in the church is much bigger than what has been reported in the media.
“You don’t know how many young men want to share their story but are afraid of guns, the connections…”
He said keeping quiet about the problem makes victims detest salvation. Kyazze quoted one of the alleged victims of a pastor saying: “He ruined my life. The more I see him preach on TV, the more I hate the Jesus he preaches.”
Ironically, Kyazze accused the National Fellowship of Born Again Pentecostal Churches where he is Secretary for Discipline, of not taking a stand in his defence.
“I have seen Solomon Male take children to Police, Mulago but I have never seen the National Fellowship speak in my defence, it’s like OAU.”
He commended the Catholic Church for instituting investigations into allegations of homosexuality against its members.
He said Male and Ssempa were invited by the Catholic Church for a meeting after a young man recently accused Father Anthony Musaala of sodomy.
Male confirmed attending the meeting with Ssempa but declined to divulge details.
Kyazze also praised Male as being a true pastor.
“Male has no car, he moves on the street, in taxis but he speaks against people who have bodyguards and guns in their cars. Even the powerful Sserwadda needs other pastors before attacking him,” Kyazze said.
A group of pastors, led by Joseph Sserwadda recently denounced Male as a liar who is bent on tarnishing the names of other pastors. They also said that he is not a pastor because he has no church. But Kyazze came to Male’s defence, saying even Jesus had no church.
Some of the alleged sodomy victims have however retracted their statements, saying that they had been coached and given money by Kyazze to pin Kayanja.
He was also accused of kidnapping Kayanja’s aide, Chris Muwonge.
He however denied the charges.
“There is no need to bribe because evidence speaks for itself. Rather than waste Shs 50m, I would rather organise a mass wedding,” said the pastor who pioneered the practice of mass weddings in the country.
Kyazze says he will not stop talking about sodomy in the media as suggested recently by the Police. He said: “mission no more silence” was started by Kayanja and should continue.
He added: “I have sprayed cockroaches and they have come out of their hiding places, then someone wants to come and kill them?”
Kyazze’s church recently started a special service every last Sunday of the month where people claiming to be sodomy victims share their experiences.
“It handles toxic issues. Those who come are treated to heavy things and hard rocks. That is why we limit it to people above 18 years,” he said.
Commenting on Kyazze’s claims that the National Fellowship of Born-Again Pentecostal Churches was doing nothing, the chairman, Alex Mitala, said Kyazze should not blame anybody because he [Kyazze] is in charge of discipline.