Cardinal in DR Congo to Head Symposium of Catholic Bishops in Africa and Madagascar

Fridolin Cardinal Ambongo confirmed President of the Symposium of Episcopal Conference of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM). Credit: ACI Africa

Fridolin Cardinal Ambongo has been confirmed as the President of the Symposium of Episcopal Conference of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM).

Cardinal Ambongo, who has been serving as SECAM Vice-President, succeeds the late Richard Kuuia Cardinal Baawobr who died in November 2022, months after he had been elected SECAM President.

Cardinal Baawobr had been elected SECAM President on 30 July 2022, the eve of the Eucharistic celebration to mark the conclusion of the 19th Plenary Assembly of SECAM in Ghana’s capital city, Accra.

In a statement signed by the new President of the continental Episcopal Symposium, SECAM Standing Committee members say Cardinal Ambongo, the Archbishop of Kinshasa Aerchdiocese in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), has been confirmed in accordance with the provisions of Articles 12 and 13 of Chapter IV of the SECAM By-Laws.

In the statement shared with ACI Africa Monday, February 20, the Standing Committee members also confirm the elevation of Bishop Lucio Andrice Muandula, Local Ordinary of Xai-Xai Diocese in Mozambique, from the position of Second Vice-President to that of the First Vice-President 


In the statement issued following their four-day “extraordinary meeting” that concluded on February 17, SECAM Standing Committee members also announce the election of Bishop Stephen Dami Mamza of Nigeria’s Yola Diocese and Bishop Gabriel Edoe  Kumordji of Keta-Akatsi Diocese in Ghana as the Second Vice-President and Treasurer of the Symposium, respectively. 

The office bearers make up the SECAM Presidential Council.  

“The SECAM Presidential Council is recomposed taking into consideration the SECAM linguistic representations (French, Portuguese, and English),” they say in the statement.

During their extraordinary meeting, SECAM Standing Committee members also “studied and approved the SECAM Strategic Plan 2022-2033. 

SECAM is a symposium bringing together Catholic Bishops from eight regional associations, which include the Association of Episcopal Conferences of Central Africa (ACEAC), the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA), the Association of Episcopal Conferences of Central Africa Region (ACERAC), and the Regional Episcopal Conferences of West Africa (RECOWA/CERAO).

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Other regional associations are the Madagascar and Episcopal Conferences of Indian Ocean (CEDOI), the Assembly of the Catholic Hierarchy of Egypt (AHCE), the Regional Episcopal Conferences of North Africa (CERNA), and the Inter-Regional Meeting of the Bishops of Southern Africa (IMBISA).

Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.