.- With elections in the beleaguered African country of Zimbabwe less than one week away, Archbishop Pius Ncube has admitted to committing adultery, according to Frontier Africa TV.
Prior to the allegations of a two year sexual affair with Mrs. Rosemary Sibanda, the archbishop was the most vocal opponent of President Robert Mugabe.
On September 11, 2007, the Vatican press office released a letter written by the archbishop in which he wrote that he offered his resignation to Vatican officials in July to prevent the Church’s image from being tarnished. "In order to spare my fellow bishops and the body of the Church any further attacks, I decided this was the best course of action," he wrote.
Pope Benedict XVI accepted the resignation of Archbishop Ncube under Canon 410.2, which allows a bishop to resign if he becomes ill or for some grave reason becomes incapable of continuing his ministry.
At the time of his resignation Archbishop Ncube did not admit to committing adultery, but in an interview he gave to Frontier Africa TV in November 2007, the prelate admitted to breaking his vow of celibacy and offered an apology to the Church.
"It is true, I do admit that I did fail in keeping God's commandment with regard to adultery," admitted Pius Ncube in the interview.” "Having failed in keeping the Seventh Commandment Thou shalt not commit adultery, I would like to apologize to you, I'd like to apologize that so many of you were praying for me, for the fact that so many of you standing with me in fact suffered so much," he said.
Elections in Zimbabwe will take place on March 29, but few expect them to be free or fair.
The opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) of Morgan Tsvangirai, a presidential candidate, charged on Monday that the Mugabe government printed nine million election ballots although there are only 5.9 million eligible voters. President Mugabe fired back that Tsvangirai is a British puppet and said the MDC founder would never be allowed to govern.
A clip of the interview on Frontier Africa TV can be found at: http://frontier-africa.tv/film/Pius%20Ncube/