18 Apr 2006

Fijiian Methodist Church blesses SDL election campaign

9:43 am on 18 April 2006

Fiji's mainly indigenous Fijian Methodist Church is facing a split along racial lines over political differences.

The Fiji Sun reports that the head of the Indian Division of the Methodist Church, the Rev William Lucas, says the power of the pulpit should not be used to back political interests.

The comments come after the President of the church, the Rev Laisias Ratabocaca, blessed the launch of the ruling SDL Party's election campaign and called on the Almighty to be with it.

But the Rev Lucas says it is important that the church does not take sides with any political party.

The Rev Lucas says with the elections just three weeks away it is sad that some parties and candidates are making racial speeches which create divisions instead of unity.

He says racial feelings have instilled fear in their members and they feel discriminated against.

He says some are even asking whether there will be another coup.