22 Aug 2011

Former Fiji Methodist leader promotes political debate within church

1:44 pm on 22 August 2011

The former president of the Methodist Church in Fiji says it's important for churches to discuss political issues.

The comment comes after moves by the interim regime to try and ensure the church's first conference in three years, due to be held from tomorrow, doesn't touch on politics.

The church is also considering a demand from the interim government that several of its leaders, including the president and the general secretary, stand down before the conference.

The government had banned the conferences in 2009 and 2010.

A former church president, the Reverend Josateki Koroi, says the best practical form of democracy can be attained by the people listening to God.

Dr Koroi says an enlightened democracy is necessary for the good governance of the nation, as well as the individual members of that democracy.

He also says democracy is reborn by the people exercising their free will but autocracy or dictatorship rests on coercion.

The Methodist Church of Fiji is holding a meeting this afternoon to discuss the government's stand down demand.