The Bishop of Lango Diocese, Prof. Alfred Olwa, has warned retired bishops and reverends against joining politics, saying this will corrupt their morals and soil the image of the Church.
During the funeral service of Lira city businessman Michael Onapa at Akaidebe village in Lira sub-county, Lira city on Monday, Olwa said any bishop or reverend who wants to contest for political office must first hand over all church property, including the collar.
He said this decision was arrived at by the Church in order to keep its good image. Olwa said many people have approached retired bishops Alfred Acur Okoda and John Charles Odurkami and asked them to contest for political offices, but he does not support the move.
"I will not support any move that lures them to contest for political offices. Politics will corrupt their minds and make them lose credence, yet they are still useful in the service of God," he said.
Olwa cited retired Bishop of West Rwenzori Diocese, Jackson Thembo Nzerebende, who went to register for a political contest fully dressed in a collar.
"It would not be bad if he Arimwerengahad handed over the dressing and the collar. This may portray us as biased yet we have to work for everyone as we play our ecclesiastical role as God's servants," he said.
Olwa noted that bishops are like fathers to Christians, so engaging in political campaigns is not good for them. Michael Onapa, 94, who was laid to rest at his home in Barapwoo, Lira sub-county in Lira City, West Division, passed away on Wednesday last week after battling diabetes for over two decades.
Bishop Prof. Alfred Olwa remembered the late Onapa as a humble, God-fearing and incorruptible man, who introduced all his children to Church and kept them in the house of God.
"Onapa was a church treasurer, but he left without any trace of corruption," he noted.
Jimmy Luis Onapa, one of Onapa's children, said their father loved all of them equally. Sam Atul, Onapa's other son, said their father administered on them disciplinary action in a humble and understandable manner.
Anna Onapa, the wife, described her husband as a peaceful man, who never engaged in domestic violence. She said Onapa was a responsible father who loved and educated all his children.