Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Methodist Stands up to Dictator Frank

Members of Fiji’s Methodist Church leadership have confirmed they were questioned by police about a forthcoming church conference. Four ministers, including church General Secretary Reverend Tuikilakila Waqairatu, were taken in for questioning by Fiji’s major crime office. The detentions came amidst tension between the church and the interim military government over the church’s conference, which is planned for the end of August in Suva. Fiji’s interim government has cancelled the annual meeting, but the church insists it will go ahead. Reverend Waqairatu says he and the other church ministers were not mistreated by the police. “Actually they were members of the Methodist Church and they were concerned about their responsibility,” he said. “We know that there was a little bit of worry that they showed in their facial expressions because they are taking the men of God. And we told them ‘Don’t you worry, just do your responsibility and we will do ours’. And we ended up, afternoon tea, and then a word of prayer.”
Radio Australia
Posted by rawfijinews
Sources in Fiji say there are definite rumblings on the ground following the arrest of the Marama Bale na Roko Tui Dreketi, Ro Temumu Kepa. They say the Fijians have been heralded on the unceremonious treatment of their lady chief and it is said that the high chief’s warriors are not going to accept it lying down. Do we have reasons to worry? Damn yeah! We’re all about peaceful resistance but at the same time, we have no powers to control the emotions or the anger of the Fijian people. Word of warning to the people within the Rewa boundary - be cautious and alert!
Posted by rawfijinews
We can confirm that Ro Temumu Kepa, the paramount chief of Rewa and Burebasaga, is under arrest at Central Police Station in Suva. Reports reveal that she was taken from her Lomanikoro village in Rewa late last night and escourted to Suva. It is also understood that Rev Kanailagi was also arrested last night and is currently detained somwhere in Suva.
Posted by rawfijinews
To the people of Rewa, Wasewase Levu o Rewa and our relatives of the Vanua Vakaturaga o Burebasaga. Please allow me to share this message with you.
In response to the formal delegation of the Methodist Church of Fiji and Rotuma visiting Lomanikoro on the afternoon of Sunday 19th July 2009, I would like to confirm that we, the Province and Wasewase Levu o Rewa will be hosting the Bose ko Viti, from Sunday 30th August to Friday the 4th of September 2009. The delegation was accompied by Ratu Inoke Seniloli, Na Turaga Lailai Mai Naua who was also a former Vice President of the Methodist Church of Fiji and Rotuma. I am deeply grateful to him for his presence and his words of encouragement and support.
In 2006 when the Bose ko Viti was held on the chiefly island of Bau, I had requested by the formal presentation of a kamunaga, the honour and privilege of hosting this August conference in 2009. This request was duly accepted by the Methodist Church of Fiji and the Vanua. The Methodist Church delegation wished to convey to me personally, the Province and Wasewase o Rewa that our modest offer to host the conference was being confirmed. When the Methodist Missionary William Cross first carried the Living Word of God, which was accepted by the Roko Tui Dreketi in 1838, it signaled for us, as a people and our traditional kinsmen through Mata Ki Burebasaga, a significant spiritual and historical chnage. The club and the spear were laid to rest and the Holy Bible became the focus of our loves. In keeping with God’s plan for our province and our people, I ask you to remember this year and the Bose ko Viti with humility. The arrival of Reverend Cross was God’s plan just as the times we are living through are also God’s plan. Let it be a time of renewal of our faith as a people in the risen Christ, let this be a time of revival of God’s word for Rewa and all of the people who live within her boundaries. Our undertaking lies firmly with the Methodist Church and the Vanua and our pact lies with our God Jehovah. In the time we have left to prepare, I plead with you all to use whatever meagre resources we have at hand to the best of your abilities and to be diligent and relentless in fulfilling your individual responsibilities.
I plead with you to be law abiding, peaceable and mindful of the special circumstances we face, as our commitment to our undertaking and our faith in God will be severely tested. Be steadfast and strong in thethese trying times. It may become difficult for me to communicate with you and for you to communicate with each other. It may be difficualt for the Methodist Church to convey its messages to all our communicties in Fiji. Therefore I urge us all, the people of Rewa to remeber and support each other in prayer. Please pray for me and I will be praying for you. Our God is great and powerful, let us all claim His promise and lean on His strength in the dyas ahead. God Bless you all and our beloved Fiji.
Vinaka Vakalevu

Adi Temumu V. Kepa
Posted by rawfijinews
Yes, People The Methodist Church has defied the orders of the military and Frank totally. They are going ahead with the Methodist Conference. They are not going to meet Frank or ask for permits to conduct meetings anymore. This is a phased response to mass civil disobedience and if need be, if pushed -an uprising. This all goes back to the 27th Aug 2008 Bose Ko Viti when the three heads of the matanitu‘s Kubuna, Burebasaga and Tovata traditionally presented their grievances on behalf of the Vanua and the Fijian people. The Church accepted the challenge to be the rallying point for Fijians as only true Fijians understands. We have had enough Frank, Aiyaz, Teleni and Driti! Sa yala eke! Sa qai tekivu me sa tucake vamalua qo na lotu me sa valuta na veika sa yaco tiko i Viti. This afternoon our sources from Police CID Headquarters Suva St Toorak say that eight Methodist senior pastors of the Standing Committee including General Secretary Reverends Tuikilikila, Apete Toko, Ili Vunisuwai and Simione Koli to name a few are being interrogated. With Tui Nasau of Waimaro Moala and Tui Levuka (Lakeba) of the yavusa Delai Bau rau na turaga qaqa at the lead who best to rally the flock! Onward Christian Soldiers.

torotorosila
Posted by rawfijinews
It is now official. The General Secretary of the Methodist Chuch of Fiji and Rotuma, has been hauled in for questioning by police along with three other senior Church figures. We knew about it from the blogs, but our heavily censored media cannot tell us and it was left to Radio New Zealand International to confirm the arrest of the Reverend Tuikilakila Waqairatu. It appears Waqairatu’s only “crime” was to write to the dictator and the police commissioner warning that bloodshed could result if the regime attempts to stop the Church’s annual conference from going ahead, which was a very Christian, compassionate and reasonable thing to do under the circumstances. The arrests represent a serious and foolhardy escalation by the dictator of his campaign to intimidate our nation’s 300,000 Methodist Church Membership. What the dictator doesn’t seem to understand is that the Methodist Church is not like a political party where taking out the leadership can greatly weaken the organization. Instead, by targeting the leadership of what is the biggest single institution in Fiji, with its hundreds of thousands of followers, Frank Bainimarama will only strengthen the Methodist Church. The dictator also doesn’t appear to understand that the Methodist Church of Fiji and Rotuma has links and affiliations that extend around the globe. The Church’s sister institutions in the United States, Australia, New Zealand and elsewhere are probably already lobbying their respective political leaderships to take issue with the Fiji regime over these latest arrests.
The bad news is that dictator’s decision to use Gestapo tactics against the Methodist Church is not good for Fiji, and we at FDN are gravely concerned about how this latest stupidity puts our beloved nation’s welfare in danger over the short term. The good news, however, is that it won’t do much good for Frank Bainimarama’s welfare either.
Fiji Democracy Now
Posted by rawfijinews
Samoa’s Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi has told New Zealand’s Foreign Minister that Pacific Islands Forum leaders shouldn’t waste any more time on the Fiji issue. Murray McCully has been in Samoa as part of a four-nation trip of the Pacific which also included stops in Tonga, Kiribati and Tuvalu. The Samoa Observer reports that Mr McCully had a discussion with Tuilaepa on pressing items for the agenda at the Pacific Islands Forum leaders meeting in Australia next month. The Prime Minister said the problems faced by Fiji should not be a major issue any longer. He told Mr McCully to leave the issue, saying leaders must focus on other matters at the Forum for the betterment of the Pacific region.
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