Lusaka Archbishop Alick Banda has suspended Father Ringford Kalaswamilomo Abel Mwelwa as Judicial Vicar of the Archdiocese of Lusaka.
In a memo dated 30th April, 2020, Archbishop Banda stated that Fr. Mwelwa had also ceased being Parish Priest of Kaunda Square Parish.
According to Bishop Banda, Father Mwelwa has been suspended with immediate effect.
“I hereby wish to inform you that I have with immediate effect suspended the Very Rev. Ringford Abel Mwelwa from the priesthood indefinitely. With this suspension he ceases to be Parish Priest for Kaunda Square Parish as well as Judicial Vicar of the Archbishop of Lusaka,” read the two-paragraphed memo dated 30th April 2020.
According to her fellow women from the Catholic Women’s League (CWL), the woman was invited to Father Mwelwa’s Parish House on Holy Thursday night.
“She was a married woman from St. Maurice and she lied to her husband that she was going for a funeral with her fellow league members in Kaunda Square. Sadly she died in Abel’s room in the Parish House that night – on Holy Thursday,” said the source.
The source said Father Mwelwa called some CWL members from St. Maurice who came to pick up the body and took it to Levy Mwanawasa University Teaching Hospital where she was confirmed dead on arrival and taken to the University Teaching Hospital mortuary as brought in dead (BID).
The source said the Archbishop of Lusaka was made to pay for the funeral expenses by the family of the deceased woman.
Police are waiting for postmortem results to determine what led to her death.
But people close to the case have disclosed that Fr Mwelwa has been suspended for a serious case of adultery and to pave way for suspected murder case investigations.
The woman identified as a member of the Catholic Women’s League (CWL) is married woman from St Maurice Parish situated on Mumbwa road and took permission from her husband to attend a funeral with her fellow League members in Kaunda Square.
During her stay at the Parish House, she died in Fr. Mwelwa room.
The church paid for the whole funeral.
The family has urged the Police to investigate the suspicious death.
Other family sources indicate that Fr Mwelwa administered some substances to the deceased in an attempt a pregnancy she was carrying after which complications arose.