The Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities, CRL in South Africa has condemned Prophet Shepherd Bushiri and his church after reports emerged that his followers will be charged up to R25000 to sit next to him at a gala dinner next week.
The CRL chairwoman Thoko Mkhwanazi-Xaluva has slammed the Enlightened Christian Gathering (ECG) as being divisive.
“We believe that every congregant should be allowed to attend fellowship in the name of God. Your socio-economic status should not exclude you from any participation in any religious programme. Church should be an equaliser and not a divider where the poor feel marginalised.” she said.
The controversial prophet’s ECG FundRaising Dinner With Major 1 is to be hosted on December 23 at the Pretoria Showgrounds.
Mkhwanazi-Xaluva said people will continue to suffer at the hands of pastors if those in power don’t intervene.
“We have repeatedly said that until parliament, specifically the portfolio committee on CoGTA (Cooperative Government and Traditional Affairs), decides what to do with our recommendations, such problems and challenges will remain. If a Peer Review Committee had already been set up they would be dealing with this matter as peers of Prophet Bushiri,” she said.
“It is our belief that the greater majority of followers spend a lot of money trying to make sure that they are promoting the objectives of the church concerned. Our worst fear is that some of them may be spending money thinking that they may be buying attention and blessings from their religious leader.”