.- It is still unclear to the Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops’ Conference as to why Pius Ncube stepped down as archbishop of the Bulawayo diocese.
The ZCBC secretary general, Rev. Frederick Chiromba announced that, “we can only assume that he felt that those allegations he is facing may compromise his pastoral duties, and probably wanted to give himself time to deal with those issues, outside the church,” reported Ecumenical News International.
Archbishop Ncube came under fire in July when a court case was filed against him alleging that he had been committing adultery over a two year period with one of his parish secretaries, Mrs. Rosemary Sibanda. The court case, filed by the Mr. Onesimus Sibanda the husband of Rosemary is seeking 20 billion Zimbabwean dollars ($160,000) in damages.
After announcing his resignation on September 11th, 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.
Ecumenical News International reported that Ncube stated, "I remain a Catholic bishop in Zimbabwe, and will continue to speak out on the issues that sadly become more acute by the day."
Before the Archbishop Ncube’s resignation the other nine Catholic bishops of Zimbabwe came to his defense saying that the accusations against Ncube were "outrageous and utterly deplorable" and "an assault on the Catholic Church".