Line between politics and religion gets thinner as diocese gets new bishop

Rev Mark Haung Godia has has been elected the new Maseno West Diocese Bishop.

This followed an election that was reportedly characterized with political under currents.
 
Godia who hails from Ugenya constituency takes over from long serving outgoing Bishop Joseph Wasonga who hails from Gem.
 
Prior to his election, Godia served as the Siaya Maseno West Diocesan Administrative secretary and was perceived to be the preferred choice of the outgoing leader.
 
Wasonga’s retirement from the pulpit was extended for an additional one year as the church prepared for a new replacement.
 
The much hyped elections were done at the ACK St Peters Cathedral church in Siaya Town on Saturday, presided over by Hesbond Owino,  who is the Diocesan  chancellor.
 
Rev Prof James Kombo of Day Star University who also hails from Gem and Rev Canon Francis Omondi of All Saints Cathedral Diocese who comes from Alego/Usonga constituency were in the race.
 
The race to replace Wasonga was punctuated with church politics pitting two of the regions that make the diocese.
 
Gem and Alego/Usonga have been the main antagonists in the effort to get the much coveted position in the ACK church.
 
Notable politicians including prominent lawyer and Gor chairman Ambrose Rachier, retired Rev Joseph Wasonga who both hail from Gem were present when the results were announced.
 
Former Siaya County Council and Alego/Usonga ODM branch coordinator Okoth Rondo was touting for the election of Omondi’s victory.
 
A few minutes to the announcement of the new Bishop, Rev Wachianga expressed confidence that his preferred choice of Prof Kombo would emerge the winner.

But this turned out to be a disappointment after the announcement that kept the clergies and the public tensed for hours.
 
“Where I have endorsed is not likely to be defeated,” said Wachiang’a.
 
Wachiang’a told the press that on Friday night, his phone was hacked by unknown persons before pointing fingers to the rival camps, adding that he was forced to replace the  sim card.
 
Rachier told the press that he had travelled from Nairobi to witness the elections which he believed his choice of  Kombo would prevail before catching an evening flight back to the city to watch Gor and AFC debut on Sunday.
 
Godia, in his acceptance speech, extended an olive branch to his competitors saying they were welcome to help him serve the church diligently.
 
The Bishop described the campaign period as a consultation and not much hyped contest by the public.
 
Godia seeks to be enthroned in September 1st while the consecration would be in July 21st.

Rev. Waungu Godia, the newly elected Maseno West ACK Bishop. PHOTO/Eric Oloo.