'High Court ruling will end leadership battle at Pentecostal Holiness Church'
An alleged splinter group of the International Pentecostal Holiness Church in Zuurbekom on Saturday forcefully held ransom over 200 members of the church and killed five people.
More than 25 firearms were seized from the premises on Saturday morning.
An undisclosed number of cars have been set alight.
South African Police Service, South African Defence Force members and JMPD officials are part of a group of 40 people arrested in connection with the deadly incident at the church on Saturday.
There has been an ongoing leadership battle since the founder of the church died in 2016.
Africa Melane on #702Breakfast speaks to church chairperson Abiel Wessie and CRL Rights Commission chairperson professor David Mosoma to share their thoughts on what unfolded on Saturday.
The plus minus 200 members we are talking about are members of the security company that has been appointed by the church to mend the premises as well as members who had volunteered to come and maintain and clean the property. There are also members who are staying in the premises.Abiel Wessie, Chairperson - International Pentecostal Holiness Church
Wessi is adamant that the church didn't contravene the lockdown rules.
These people invaded our church in the early hours of the morning, they are members of our splinter group who came from the North West. Those are the people that broke the lockdown rules, they travelled provincially, ambushed the headquaters, gained forceful entry an they started shooting.Abiel Wessie, Chairperson - International Pentecostal Holiness Church
He says since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the church stopped congregating and has never broken the law by congregating.
There is a matter at the high court regarding the leadership battle and hopefully the matter would be sorted, he adds.
Once a ruling has been made by a court, the leadership battle will end.Abiel Wessie, Chairperson - International Pentecostal Holiness Church
Mosoma says the incident is very regrettable and the commission has attempted twice to convene a meeting with the three factions of the church and one faction never attended the meeting.
We want to pursue negotiations and reconciliations among the three factions and charge a way forward. These are spiritual matters that don't need the courts.professor David Mosoma, Chairperson - CRL Rights Commission
Listen below to the full conversation:
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