Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu to Visit South African Mine
October 11, 2012 1 Comment
Dr John Sentamu, the Archbishop of York who is a strong contender to take over as the global head of the Anglican church, will visit South Africa’s restive platinum belt this week where he is expected to preach to striking miners.
The Telegraph reports:
Dr Sentamu arrives in the country on Thursday and he and his wife will be hosted by Dr Jo Seoka, the outspoken Bishop of Pretoria who led mediation efforts in Marikana and accused the government of an “apartheid-era crackdown” over the shooting by police of 34 striking workers there.
Dr Seoka has also slated London-listed Lonmin, which runs the Marikana mine, and nearby AngloPlatinum, which fired 12,000 striking miners last week, for forcing their workers to live in “absolute poverty”.
Speaking to The Daily Telegraph on Wednesday, he said he planned to take Uganda-born Dr Sentamu to the scene of the fatal shootings, which sparked a wave of unrest in the mining sector and other industries across the country and shows no signs of abating, eight weeks later.
“He is going to lead a Eucharist service at Rustenburg (the mining city) on Sunday and we are hoping to take him to Marikana as well,” he said.
“I have sent him messages to say that I was busy with the situation and will brief him fully on it when he arrives.”
He said that he expected a large turnout for the visit to the mines on Sunday, adding that people would “take comfort” from the visit of a senior church leader.
“They have been looking for support and will be delighted to know someone like him is coming,” he said. “They have been saying that the mine owners must pack their bags and go back to England but I don’t expect any hostility towards him, a church leader, even if he is English.”
He said he had no inside information about a possible promotion for Dr Sentamu. “If he is going to be announced the next Archbishop of Canterbury, it will be a very exciting trip,” he said.
A spokesman for Dr Sentamu would not comment on the specifics of his trip, but added: “He is aware of the situation that is out there.”
I’ve mentioned Bishop Jo Seoka before and the posts were not so good. See South African Anglican Bishop Accused of Assaulting Priest and Pretoria Angican Bishop Under Investigation for Misconduct.