Regulator opens new statutory inquiry into Ethiopian church

And, as earlier this year in a separate case, the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church St Mary of Debre Tsion has appealed to the charity tribunal

Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church St Mary of Debre Tsion
Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church St Mary of Debre Tsion

The Charity Commission has opened a statutory inquiry into a London-based Ethiopian church for the second time this year.

The trustees of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church St Mary of Debre Tsion have appealed to the charity tribunal against the opening of the inquiry, also for the second time this year.

A spokeswoman for the commission said it had opened an inquiry into the church on 6 October 2014. She said the commission would make no further comment until it made a public statement on the opening of the inquiry.

On 23 October, the charity’s nine trustees appealed the commission’s decision to open the latest inquiry, the tribunal’s register of cases shows.

It is the second time in six months that this situation has occurred. In May, the charity submitted an appeal to the tribunal against the opening of an inquiry by the commission into its governance.

In that instance, the regulator then dropped its statutory inquiry, but the church decided not to withdraw its appeal, instead continuing to question the basis on which the inquiry was opened.

The commission has since been given permission to appeal to the upper tribunal over the first-tier tribunal’s refusal to strike that initial appeal out. The upper tribunal is yet to rule on the matter.

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