Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Methodists reject role in Charter

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

THE Methodist Churh in Fiji will not take part in the National Council for Building a Better Fiji and the formulation of the proposed People's Charter.

The church's standing committee met last Friday to determine the church's view on the issue.

Assistant general secretary Reverend Tuikilakila Waqairatu said the church has decided not to be part of the NCBBF because the militay-led regime was an illegal government.

"So for the church to take part in this process we will be seen as supporting this illegal government and we cannot compromise our morals and values in society.

"We believe that only an elected government chosen by the people should do such things and not an illegal regime," Reverend Waqairatu confirmed.

He said that after 13 months of leading the country, the regime had brought much suffering to the people of Fiji.

"A lot of people are unemployed, there is a lot of psychological and financial stress within our communities," he added.

Mr Waqairatu said another reason they do not want to take part in the NCBBF is because of the way in which Fijian institutions have been deprived of power.

He said the provincial councils, the Great Council of Chiefs and the Native Land Trust Board were some of the institutions that were degraded after the December, 2006 takeover.

Meanwhile, the Indian division superintendent, Reverend William Lucas said the Indian members of the church would meet on February 16 to decide whether they will take part in the formulation of the Charter or not.

"At the moment, we have not decided anything; we will meet in Rakiraki on February 16 and get our members' thoughts on the issue.

"We want to help the country move forward, and even though the standing committee has made its stand, we will only make a statement after the Rakiraki meet," he said.

Mr Lucas said there are 3,000 Indians who are members of the church from 11 circuits around Fiji.

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