A LIST of Zimbabwe’s most influential youths compiled by a United Kingdom-based website has laid bare the rivalry between Prophetic Healing and Deliverance (PHD) Ministries leader Walter Magaya and United Families International church (Ufic) founder Emmanuel Makandiwa.
In the list of the top 100 most influential young Zimbabweans compiled by www.mafaro.co.uk, Makandiwa was pipped for the top spot by Magaya, who came out tops, while the Ufic leader came third. The cold war between the two was reportedly over who was more popular and has a bigger following than the other.
Magaya accepted the honour while Makandiwa rubbished the award.
The Ufic leader dismissed the award saying it was bogus and disclosed that he has in the past rejected such honours because he valued “heavenly” recognition.
Ufic spokesperson Prime Kufakunesu in a statement said Makandiwa knew a rival church was behind the advert.
He, however, did not disclose the suspected church behind the congratulatory advert which they considered “malicious”.
But PHD Ministries spokesperson Admire Mango yesterday said that Makandiwa should not point fingers at others, but deal with “problems in his church internally”.
“We don’t know what they are trying to say in their statement but we believe they should solve their own issues internally and not blame other people,” Mango said.
“We accepted the honour and recognition because we believe the Lord is using the man of God and touching many lives in a humbling way. We don’t seek relevance at all as we don’t seek earthly recognition but again we have to appreciate a recognition bestowed on us.”
The response came after Makandiwa distanced Ufic from a group that published an advertisement in a local daily congratulating him for the listing claiming the statement by a group calling itself “Sons and Daughters” bordered on “terrorism”.
This has sparked speculation of a “Holy War” between the Pentecostal rival prophets over who was more popular than the other.
“Initial professional investigations show that the advert is the work of another church trying to magnify and glorify the bogus award,” Makandiwa said in the advert.
Some church leaders believed the statement confirmed the cold war between the two rival churches over the popularity ratings a move that indicated some Pentecostal churches were losing ground to their rivals.
Mango however, said as far as Magaya was concerned, Makandiwa was his elder brother and treated him as such.
“Prophet Magaya treats Prophet Makandiwa as his brother and he has made it public that he has nothing against him. So any suggestion contrary to it is unfortunate and untoward,” Mango said.
Magaya last month said that he had nothing against Makandiwa but confirmed there was a “silent war” in the Pentecostal movement.
“Yes, there is a silent war especially with those that started earlier. They feel challenged at the rate at which we are growing at,” he said then.