Chances of the Ugandan born Archbishop of York John Sentamu to head the influential Anglican Church fell flat after the 16-strong Crown Nominations Commission rejected him on a flimsy reason that he lacks diplomatic skills.
Sentamu who was the front runner for Archbishop of Canterbury office, sources in selection commission said, has lost the race to hitherto obscure Bishop of Norwich Graham James and the Bishop of Durham Justin Welby.
“Archbishop Sentamu is popular and a charismatic leader, but lacks in the diplomatic skills of Lambeth palace,” a source quotes one of the members of the committee as saying.
Sentamu who is a brother to Pentecostal Pastor Robert Kayanja of Miracle Centre Kampala, was destined to make history as the first black man ever in the history of Anglican church to become Archbishop of Cantebury.
The Commission was expected to elect a successor to Dr Rowan Williams at a three-day meeting last week, but the lack of a clear winner has left it floundering.
As opposed to Sentamu who was outstanding , one Church insider said the two remaining front-runners: ‘Bishop Welby is seen as too conservative and too inexperienced and Bishop James as too liberal and too dull.
One senior cleric said: ‘The whole thing has become a farce. One minute it is compared to a horse race. The next no one can find a winner. We need to have a much more transparent and representative process.’
After learning of the predicament that has befallen his friend Sentamu, Dr Williams warned that his successor would need ‘the constitution of an ox and skin of a rhinoceros’.