Kenyan High Court Judge Urges Prayer and Out-of-Court Mediation as GC Sues Nairobi Cosmopolitan Conference
1 October 2019 | A High Court judge overseeing a case in which the General Conference (GC) of the Adventist denomination is suing recently formed Nairobi Cosmopolitan Conference (NCC) is asking both parties to pray and seek mediation on the issue outside court.
The General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists is suing the Nairobi Cosmopolitan Conference over the use of the Adventist trademark and logo.
“I would like to see parties consider negotiating this matter out of court. Mediation would work, explore it, we are not dealing with a logo for business, this is a church organisation,” said Justice Nzioka, according to Kenya’s Daily Nation.
“It is a matter that can be discussed, meditate on it in prayer, I have no doubt that which we can’t have a break through as men we can deal with it in prayer and like Paul says in the good book all these you are fighting for it’s all vanity.”
According to the Standard Digital, the GC, via the East Kenya Union Conference (EKUC), is asking Kenya’s High Court to ban the NCC from operating as a religious entity. The legal argument is that the NCC should not be able to operate as a religious organization because it is registered as a private company.
The GC is claiming that the Adventist denomination has exclusive rights to the name Seventh-day Adventist.
The case was filed September 18.
The NCC has also been accused of trespass and invasion, as it has taken over and is currently running a number of churches owned by the denomination. According to the Standard Digital, these include Mountain View SDA, Makandi SDA, KPCU SDA and Saika West SDA.
Deep disagreements continue to divide the denomination in the region. One major source of the tension is a dispute over a 2015 election in which heads of the Central Kenya Conference (part of the EKUC) of the denomination were chosen. Some felt that the election process was manipulated and that appointments had been biased by ethnic divisions.
In the wake of the election, the Nairobi Cosmopolitan Conference was formed as a rival to the Central Kenya Conference.