Friday, September 02, 2011

Draconian Military Directive to Fiji Methodist Church

Contacts in Fiji have provided a copy of the Military Council Directive to the Fiji Methodist Church further restricting its activities and operations after failing to force its democratically elected leaders to stand down.

The Directive was signed by the bloated Land Force Commander, and the man who got his secretary pregnant when Commissioner Central, Lt Col Mosese Tikoitoga. The order puts a ban on any of the church meetings/gatherings set down in its constitution, including the AGM, Standing and Finance Committees. It seems, the military wants to destroy Fiji's largest church just because it did not allow itself to be intimidated by the illegal regime and its evil executioners in the form of Tikoitoga.

Not satisfied, an attachment to the directive by the Police further adds activities of the Church that will be subjected to the ban. It appear ridiculous when it even includes:
  • church bazaar;
  • church fundraising;
  • church camping;
  • church rally;
  • church open air; and
  • church sports day.
Handwritten notes on the directive, no doubt by Tikoitoga himself, is for the monitoring of the order. A similar order is included in the Police directive to operational staff.

Such is life under a brutal, dictatorial and unelected regime that seized power at the point of guns. That is what life is in Fiji right now. Even a respected and revered institution as the Methodist Church, whose guidance and inspiration, had got Fiji out from the dark days of cannibalism, now becomes the whipping boy of the military regime and to the delight and ultimate shame of Mosese Tikoitoga.

Read below more stories on developments in implementing the draconian directive.

Fiji Live News - September 02, 2011

Police clarify church meetings 

The Fiji Police Force has today confirmed that the ban on Methodist church meetings only covers the nine meetings highlighted by the Military Council and not the usual congregation meetings. 

Police Director Operations SSP Rusiate Tudravu says Police made some operational directives on Friday outside the Military council resolutions. Tudravu says the directive was just to tone down some rumours that were going around, and things should now proceed as normal for congregations. “As of today there will be no other restriction to any of the church service conducted within the Methodist Church, I just want to have that clear. The government does not have any intention to have any congregation being denied its freedom of worship.” 

Tudravu says the Fiji Police are also aware of some people trying to use the church for their own benefit. “We have received information that opportunist are using this Methodist church saga for their own political reason. That is why we had directed all this convergence and all meetings just to stop for a while but with effect from today everything goes normal.” Tudravu adds there will be no Police officers going around to stop churches as all Police divisional commanders have been notified.

Fiji Village News - 02 September 2011

Church has to apply for permit for any outside gatherings

The Methodist Church of Fiji will still need to apply for a permit for any outside gatherings.

Director Operations SSP Rusiate Tudravu said for church gatherings that include Fundraising, rally, camping, open air crusades and sports day, they will need to apply for a permit under the PER.

Today Police confirmed that only restrictions on small church gatherings have been lifted.

SSP Tudravu said these include meetings of the youth groups, women’s group and cell groups.

However he said the church conference, monthly, quarterly, financial committee and annual meetings are still restricted.

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