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Elcin suspends sex-for-work pastor

2023-06-07  Festus Hamalwa

Elcin suspends sex-for-work pastor

ONGWEDIVA – A pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Namibia, who was accused by a young man of having had anal sex with him in exchange for a job, has been suspended.

Gideon Niitenge, the leader of Elcin western diocese, confirmed Hendrick Shuudeni’s suspension to New Era on Tuesday.

Niitenge said Elcin is wholly against what Shuudeni, the pastor of Ruacana Elcin church, is accused of.

“Elcin will not allow a pastor who is having sexual intercourse with another man to lead the congregation,” he added.

Niitenge said this is indeed a bad example to the church members of Ruacana Elcin, especially to the young men.

“As a church leader, he is expected to show a good example the society but not to sleep with another man. Therefore, we do not support this in Elcin,” he stressed.

He added that these allegations forced his office and senior church management to meet and suspend Shuudeni for a while.

In addition, he said even the Bible says, “No man is allowed to have sexual intercourse with another. It is just wrong for a church leader who has been given the responsibility to lead the whole congregation.”

“I am not saying Shuudeni had sex with another man because we don’t have proof. However, we are just following the Elcin procedures and this is according to the allegations circulating in public,” he added.

Shuudeni refused to comment and warned this reporter to not call him again.

Niitenge was not specific on how long the suspension will last.

“We are still deciding how long he will be on suspension,” he stated.

Meanwhile, Zachariah Amakali of the Ohangwena police said the investigations on this case have been completed.

“This week we will send a docket to the office of prosecutor general to determine whether Shuudeni will be arrested or not,” Amakali said.

Last month, 24-year-old Jeremia Mushinina from Onhuno opened a case against Shuudeni who promised to give him a job in the police force in exchange for sex, to which he agreed. But the pastor did not deliver on his promise.

It is alleged that Mushinina and Shuudeni have been engaged in a romantic relationship for some time now, in which they had sex several times.

According to the police’s investigations, Mushunina decided to expose Shuudeni when he refused to send him the N$10 000 that he was demanding from him.

2023-06-07  Festus Hamalwa

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