#header-inner img {margin: 0 auto !important; #header-inner {text-align: Center ;} Fiji Coupfourpointfive: Departing Methodist officials: Lasaro and Kanailagi to blame for rift with government

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Departing Methodist officials: Lasaro and Kanailagi to blame for rift with government

More information has surfaced about the fallout between the two most senior officials of the Methodist Church and the elders who asked them to step down.

The Fiji Broadcasting Corporation is reporting the rift between the church and the Bainimarama government was started by former church presidents, Reverend Manasa Lasaro (right) and Reverend Tomasi Kanailagi (below), according to the church executives who've been asked to step down.

Reverend Ame Tugaue and Tuikilakila Waqairatu were asked to vacate their positions at a meeting of the heads of the 54 divisions of the Methodist Church in Fiji.

But FBC says Tugaue and Waiqairatu told church elders at the meeting on Wednesday night that the real cause of the rift with government was a statement put out by former president, Lasaro, and the content of a sermon by another former church president, Kanailagi in 2009.

The meeting was told that Government did not like the statements being put out by the two former heads and called Tugaue and Waqairatu to a meeting with the Military Council last year.

FBC says in this meeting, Tugaue and Waqairatu were told to remove the two former presidents.

Instead of doing so, they told the Military Council that according to the church constitution they had no powers to oust the former presidents.

Meanwhile the Fiji Village says the acting general secretary of the Methodist Church, Reverend Tevita Nawadra, says while some Ministers and divisions wanted the president and the general secretary to step down, others wanted them to stay.

The Fiji Village quotes Nawadra as saying there were theological issues over the Church appearing to support the current government.

Some ministers and divisions want the church to remove itself from political issues and focus on the spiritual wellbeing of their members, as they were encouraged to by Bainimarama at their Wednesday meeting.

Fiji Village says about ten percent of the 130 church ministers and stewards attending the Methodist Church meeting called for Tugaue and Waqairatu to relinquish their authority.

Nawadra said while this was done there were other church ministers who wanted the executives to stay on.

The question now being asked is whether a motion of no confidence can be moved against Tugaue and Waqairatu.

According to the Methodist Church constitution, the executives elected in the Church's Annual Conference can only be replaced or removed during the Annual Conference.

But signs are now emerging that some church ministers and stewards from the different circuits in the country want a change.

Nawadra said there were clearly two sides when the issue emerged after Bainimarama's departure from the meeting on Wednesday.


Anonymous said...

Defining spiritual issues.

How about a group of oppurtunist thugs and thieves holding a congregation (country) to ransome?

Anonymous said...

There goes Frank again - trying to usurp the authority of the Church.

Why can't he keep his nose out from things that do not concern him. He has already grabbed government through the barrel of the gun and he seems to think that he now can do anything he wants personally.

The members of the military and Frank will answer for this sooner than soon!