Hungry people in Swaziland defied Christian leaders and attended a Muslim ceremony, because free meat was being given away.
As part of the Islamic Eid-ul-Adah ceremony Muslims slaughter meat and give one third of it away to needy people.
When it was announced that free meat would be available, Christian leaders condemned the move and ordered their flocks to stay away.
President of the League of Churches Bishop Simon Hlatjwako was reported by the Times of Swaziland saying true Christians would not participate in the event and would not eat the free meat offered by Muslims.
‘True Christians should not dare set foot at the Muslim slaughtering ceremony,’ he reportedly said. He added, ‘Personally, I would not even bother myself; I do not care about their meat and ceremonies. Muslims worship their own god and as Christians, we do not go along with their god.’
The newspaper also reported Bishop Steven Masilela, President of the Conference of Churches, saying as they were the body of Christ, they were not allowed to eat everything.
But the Christian leaders went unheeded. The Swazi Observer reported on Tuesday (13 September 2016) that more than 500 people queued for the meat at Ezulwini.
The newspaper said they were driven by hunger. At least 300 1kg parcels of meat were distributed after about 15 cattle were slaughtered. About 200 people returned home empty-handed.
The Observer found many people who were critical of the Christian leaders. One who did not want to be named said, ‘What better deal do Christian leaders have to offer to alleviate hunger if they do not want Muslims to help the needy?’