Society

Conflict of authority within EEC worsen, pastors head to Supreme Court

The internal leadership crisis plaguing the ‘Eglise Evangelique du Cameroun’ (EEC) in the Littoral Region of the country has taken an unprecedented twist.

The church, which has been divided into two warring factions for the past one year, following the election of a new National Bureau headed by Rev Pastor Samuel Hendje Toya seems to be heading to the Supreme Court, after the Littoral Appeal Court adjudicated that the current National Bureau of the church should be suspended.

Rev Jean Samuel Hendje

The Douala Appeal Court’s ruling last week confirmed the verdict earlier passed by the Bonanjo Magistrates’ Court that the National Bureau of the Church should be suspended.

Meanwhile, speaking during a press conference in Douala on Tuesday, June 12, Rev Pastor Toya, said he has resolved to file an appeal at the Supreme Court in Yaoundé against the ruling of the Douala Appeal Court.

It would be recalled that in April, 2017, a faction of the church filed a case at the Wouri High Court, following a contested elections that led to the constitution of a new National Bureau, after an elective general assembly that held in Ngaoundere in April, 2017.

In the election, Rev Pastor Jean Samuel Hendje Toya, defeated Rev Pastor Richard Priso Moungole, who was the candidate of the Wouri Regional Synod of the EEC.

But the President of the Wouri Regional Synod, Rev Pastor Isédou Kouoh and many pastors and Christians of that Synod protested the outcome of the election.

They accused those who oversaw the election of having rigged the polls in favour of HendjeToya, with the influence of the outgoing National President, Rev Pastor Isaac Batomen Henga.

According to them, the total numbers of votes cast were more than the number of delegates that were officially registered to vote, meaning that there was electoral fraud.

Another complaint that was raised was in relation to an agreement that was reportedly reached in the EEC in 2009, at a meeting in Yabassi, Nkam Division of the Littoral Region.

In that meeting, it was agreed that the post of National President should rotate between the three major tribes in the Church (Bamilekes, Sawas (Dualas) and Bamouns).

Going by the complainants, it was the turn of the Dualas to provide a candidate for the post of National President.  But another Sawa, Rev Pastor HendjeToya, backed by the outgoing National President, put up his candidature to challenge Rev Pastor Priso Moungole, who was the candidate, chosen by the Wouri Regional Synod for the post. So the Dualas felt cheated.

Rev Priso Moungole

The aggrieved factions also accused the former National President, Batomen Henga, of having embezzled FCFA 200 million, which was money the EEC Christians raised for a cooperative project.

With such pent-up anger,  the Wouri  Regional Synod led by the  President, dragged Hendje Toya and his predecessor to the Wouri High Court for electoral fraud.