Shembe factions await rightful leader ruling

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Pietermaritzburg High Court Judge Isaac Madondo is expected to conclude his judgment to announce the rightful leader of the Nazareth Baptist Church.

In October 2016, Judge Achmat Jappie ruled in favour of the late Vela Shembe after church elders nominated Mduduzi Shembe to lead of the church.

Mduduzi is the son of former church leader Vimbeni Shembe who died in 2011.

The eBubleni faction led by Mduduzi is appealing the Durban High Court ruling.

Speaking earlier this week when he began handing down judgement, Judge Madondo said Judge President Achmat Jappie overlooked and failed to analyse the authenticity of evidence given by the Inkosi of the Amaqadi tribe, Mqoqi Ngcobo, in 2016.

But, Madondo says he does not dispute that Vimbeni did write a letter to nominate Vela as leader.

“The court accord rejected the evidence by both the second appellant and Inkosi Qwabe relating to the oral nomination on the grounds that they could not tell the court as to what the late leader actually said to them when making the alleged oral nomination. To me, the gist of what the late leader conveyed to the two witnesses is clear, that on his death he wanted his son to succeed him.”

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