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South Sudan court stays dismissal of Jonglei bishop

The defrocked Jonglei Bishop, Rev. Akurdid Ngong Akurdid (Photo: Supplied)

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By Manyuon Mayen Manyuon, Juba

The South Sudan High Court has dismissed the court case between the defrocked Jonglei Provincial Archbishop and the primate of the Episcopal of the South Sudan (ECSS) for further trials in the Tribunal court.

But the ECSS headquarters in Juba described the verdict as a “win” in its favour as the expelled cleric had refused the Tribunal court earlier.

Presiding Judge Laurent Jaja said there were no clear faith and church doctrines in the Constitution related to the case in their findings, but instead the case be handled within the Church’s constitution.

“The judiciary has no capacity or power to handle those issues related to faith and the church. The Church have their own tribunal court, constitution and canon, so they can resolve it from there” he said in a dismissal presentation.

Manyang Gabriel Kon, the ECSS Communications officer who was part of the court’s session said the Anglican headquarters where the primate sits have welcomed the move, but wondered whether there would be further room for the defrocked cleric gain since he disputed the tribunal court’s idea by then.

“I don’t think if we shall have a next step because he (the defrocked Bishop Akurdid) has already been removed from the system,” he told Juba Echo in an interview after the verdict.

“He was the one who went to judiciary, but we were not having such intention to take him there as we opted for tribunal court,” Kon added.

Philip Maluak Deng, the Secretary and the Spokesperson of the defrocked Bishop insisted that the defrocking of his Boss was unprocedural.

“Defrocking can be issued to someone who has committed criminal offence like murder and adultery,” he said on his Facebook page.

The Episcopal of South Sudan in (ECSS) in Jonglei has been suffering leadership crisis after the defrocked cleric rejected his dismissal last year and maintained the status quo.

The fired Akurdid had termed his dismissal as “understanding of the provincial constitution”

Earlier this year, the cleric sued the ECSS to the court to finally see that the case was bounced back to the Church’s leadership where the primate is the overall boss.

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