30 May 2006

Fiji Methodists call for end to gay rights

6:45 am on 30 May 2006

Fiji's influential Methodist Church has called on the new, post-election government to drop a section of the constitution that upholds the rights of the gay community.

The president of the Methodist Church, the Rev Laisiasa Ratabacaca, has told the Fiji Times that if leaders are concerned with morality and keeping Christian values, they should see to it that the matter is dealt with.

He says gay rights provided for in the constitution were not part of the recommendation made by the Reeves Constitution Commission and this is an opportune time to look seriously at the issue.

Another senior Methodist clergyman is quoted as saying that sexual orientation is "against the holy law of creation" and the church does not condone homosexuality.

Meanwhile, the Methodist Church has applied for a permit from the government to stage a protest march against the screening of the controversial movie, the Da Vinci Code.