Tanzania elects Valentino L. Mokiwa as primate

February 27, 2008

The Anglican Church of Tanzania has elected Bishop Valentino L. Mokiwa of the Diocese of Dar es Salaam to serve as its next primate for a five-year term.

Mokiwa, 43, will succeed Archbishop Donald Leo Mtetemela, who has served as primate since 1998 and will retire on May 25.

The election took place in Dodoma on February 28 during a special session of the General Synod of the Anglican Church of Tanzania. Synod members came from Tanzania's 21 Anglican dioceses, with each diocese being asked to send five delegates -- a diocesan bishop, two clergy and two lay persons. Two dioceses -- Zanzibar and South West Tanganyika -- that are currently without a bishop sent only clergy and lay delegates.

Archbishop-elect Mokiwa will be installed in Dodoma on May 25. He has served as bishop of Dar es Salaam since April 2002.

Mtetemela, whose tenure as primate is coming to an end after serving the maximum of two five-year terms, will continue as diocesan bishop for the Diocese of Ruaha for the next five years, while also serving as chancellor of St. John's University in Dodoma.

The Universities Mission to Central Africa and the Church Mission Society began work in 1864 and 1878 at Mpwapwa. The province was inaugurated in 1970 following the division of the Province of East Africa into the Province of Kenya and the Province of Tanzania.

The Anglican Church of Tanzania hosted the February 2007 meeting of Anglican Communion primates in Dar es Salaam.

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