Court rules against Rev­erend Ran­tle

Lesotho Times - - News - Tefo Tefo

The High Court has re­strained Rev­erend Daniel Ran­tle from as­so­ci­at­ing him­self with the Methodist Church of South­ern Africa and its com­pany.

Rev­erend was ex­pelled from the church in 2006 for al­leged mis­con­duct but ar­gues in court pa­pers that the dis­ci­plinary hear­ing that found him guilty was held in his ab­sence as he had al­ready left the church in 1998. He how­ever, says he joined the Methodist Church of South­ern Africa (Pro­pri­etary) Limited Com- pany, which looks af­ter the church’s as­sets, as a mem­ber and Min­is­ter.

But the church, com­pany, Pre­sid­ing Bishop of the Methodist Church of South­ern Africa Ziphoz­ihle Daniel Siwa, and Ex­ec­u­tive Sec­re­tary of the Methodist Church of South­ern Africa Char­maine Mor­gan, sought the court’s in­ter­ven­tion in re­strain­ing Rev­erend Ran­tle and two other in­di­vid­u­als from us­ing the church’s names, and church-re­lated ma­te­rial and re­frain from as­so­ci­at­ing them­selves with the church’s com­pany.

They ac­cuse Rev­erend Ran­tle of “pass­ing him­self as the Su­per­in­ten­dent of the Methodist Church of South­ern Africa and or Head of the Methodist Church of South­ern Africa (Pro­pri­etary) Limited and that his fol­low­ers wear the same uni­form as that of the first ap­pli­cant and also the same log”.

Rev­erend Ran­tle is cited in court pa­pers along­side Stephen Mapheelle, ‘ Malimpho Mary Phatela, the Regis­trar of Com­pa­nies, Min­is­ter of Trade and In­dus­try, Co­op­er­a­tives and Mar­ket­ing and the At­tor­ney Gen­eral as first to sixth re­spon­dents, re­spec­tively.

Rev­erend Ran­tle, in court pa­pers, de­scribes Mr Mapheelle and Ms Phatela as his “faith­ful” as­so­ciates. The three had reg­is­tered as the only di­rec­tors of the Methodist Church of South­ern Africa (Pro­pri­etary) Limited Com­pany.

But act­ing High Court Judge Jus­tice John ‘Musi on Tues­day ruled in favour of the church. The judge said Rev­erend and his “faith­ful” as­so­ciates should stop us­ing the name of the church, and uni­forms “de­signed in the three tra­di­tional colours of the church be­ing red, white and black”.

He also or­dered the trio and their fol­low­ers to stop us­ing the church’s lo­gos, sym­bols, em­blems and coat of arms.

The South Africa-based judge also or­dered the Regis­trar of Com­pa­nies to re­move the names of the trio from all records re­lat­ing to the church’s com­pany.

Jus­tice ‘ Musi fur­ther or­dered the Regis­trar of Com­pa­nies to re­store in the records and re-reg­is­ter Daniel Ja­cob Senkhane, Jakob Te­boho Se­mane and Joseph Hlehlethe as di­rec­tors and mem­bers of the Methodist Church of South­ern Africa (Pro­pri­etary) Limited Com­pany.

Jus­tice ‘Musi also or­dered the trio to pay costs of the suit on the grounds they knew they were act­ing il­le­gally.

“There is no rea­son why the costs should not fol­low the suc­cess.

“It is clear that the first to third re­spon­dents (Rev­erend Ran­tle and his two as­so­ciates) acted il­le­gally and they en­deav­oured to de­fend a mat­ter in which they had very lit­tle, if any, prospects of suc­cess,” Jus­tice ‘ Musi said.

“Al­though many would be hes­i­tant to ad­mit it, churches are, these days, run as busi­ness. They gen­er­ate huge amounts of money in or­der to ful­fill their re­li­gious, phil­an­thropic and ed­u­ca­tional du­ties.

“They, there­fore, have a rep­u­ta­tion wor­thy of pro­tec­tion against an­other per­son or in­sti­tu­tion mis­rep­re­sent­ing to the pub­lic that it is that par­tic­u­lar church or af­fil­i­ated or as­so­ci­ated with that church whilst it is not.”

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