The meeting between President Yoweri Museveni and the archbishop of Kampala, Dr Cyprian Kizito Lwanga, early this week meant to resolve their differences – imagined and real – is good for the country.
These are all influential leaders; therefore, the uncertainty surrounding their lives and suspicions against each other inevitably affects their followers negatively.
The matter had escalated to an extent that Archbishop Lwanga had even lost faith in some of the priests, nuns and seminarians around him.
The prelate suspected some of them had been hired by the state to spy on him. The president, too, was suspicious the man of God was involved in activities aimed at removing him from power unconstitutionally.
We shall not probe the veracity of these allegations, but it is imperative not to just sweep the matter under the carpet.
The church has power to unite, inspire, comfort and give hope to the people. And the preaching of the religious leaders sometimes is laden with real-life experiences, which sometimes bring them into conflict with the interests of the state.
Unfortunately the church, in that regard, is looked at as the one instigating rebellion or dissent against the state. So, the state is uncomfortable, and this opens up floodgates of suspicions and; hence, the bad blood between church leaders and the president.
It is our hope that the discussions were sincere, honest and went to the real root of suspicion between the two leaders. It is also hoped that by the time the two parties sat to discuss, they had really made up their minds to bring this unnecessary apprehension to an end.
We hope those who have been stoking the negative fires between the two leaders have also stopped and embraced the talks with good faith.
The country does not need conflicts between the church and the state.