Divine Healer’s Church dispute back in court

Divine Healer’s Church dispute back in court

Six pastors of the Divine Healer’s Church have gone back to the Accra High Court to stop the General Overseer of the Church and four other principal officers from staying in office.

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It is the case of the plaintiffs that General Overseer, Apostle Isaac Kwabena Adade, and the other officers have refused to retire, despite reaching the retirement age of 65 as stipulated by the constitution of the church.

The other officers joined to the suit as defendants are the Deputy General Overseer, Apostle Maxwell Aryeetey Foster; the General Secretary, Apostle Kenneth Ashaley Addo; the Chairman of the National Youth Ministry, Apostle Emmanuel Acquaye, and the National Women’s Fellowship Leader, Apostle Dora Edith Osekre.

The six plaintiffs are led by the Chairman of the Pastoral Council of the church and the Tema A2 Regional Head of the church, Apostle Daniel Mensah Attakpah.

Injunction application

In furtherance of their case, the plaintiffs have also filed an interlocutory application seeking an order from the court restraining the church, the principal officers, or their assigns from organising a congress in October this year to elect principal officers, as well as amend the church’s constitution

According to the plaintiffs, the defendants were seeking to use to congress to amend the constitution of the church and increase the retirement age from 65 to 70, as well as allow principal officers who are already 70 years to stay in office for an additional three years.

Such a move, the plaintiffs argued,  was in flagrant violation of a consent judgment entered by the court on June 6, 2023 after an agreement by the parties to use mediation to settle the dispute.

The plaintiffs are, therefore, urging the court to grant the application for interlocutory injunction pending the final determination of the suit.

“If the defendants are not stopped from holding the annual church congress as scheduled, it might be inviting uproar, resistance, violent rebellion involving destruction of church property and related personal property,” the plaintiffs av

Consent judgment

The dispute was originally settled out of court which resulted in a consent judgment by the court on June 6, 2023, following an intervention by the Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council (GPCC).

Under the consent judgment, the General Overseer and his deputy were supposed to stay in office until 2025, while the Church would organise elections this year to elect new national officers.

However, the plaintiffs went back to court with a case that the defendants have violated the consent judgment by making moves to amend the constitution to allow them to stay in power.

Statement of claim

It is the contention of the six pastors that the continuous stay in office of the five principal officers of the church is against the constitution of the church and ,therefore, unconstitutional.

“In spite of having attained the age limit of 65 in 2011 and having remained in office unconstitutionally for a second term as general overseer and member of the National Executive Council which ended in 2016, second defendant continued to stay in office unconstitutionally and indefinitely without proper procedure for his replacement.

“With reference to the third, fourth and sixth defendants, each of them has, just as the second defendant, remained in office unconstitutionally in their respective positions beyond their tenures 

Writer’s email: [email protected]

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