25 Aug 2011

Fiji Methodists to explain regime's conference cancellation

9:06 am on 25 August 2011

The Methodist Church of Fiji will hold a news conference today to clear up confusion surrounding the interim government's cancellation of the Church's annual conference.

The church has now been banned by the military regime from holding its annual meeting for a third consecutive year.

The General Secretary of the Church, Reverend Tuikilakila Waqairatu, says the news conference will focus on why the President of the church - the Reverend Ame Tugaue - and himself were asked not to chair the conference.

"They need to understand the position of the church and the kind of offense that this interim government has put us into court. That offence is not a personal offence but it is the institutional position that we are defending. They need to understand that. So there is need for a lot of clarification on that - the misunderstanding of the present regime on the opposition needs to be helped."

The Church President, Reverend Ame Tugaue, and Reverend Tuikilakila Waqairatu were charged two years ago with holding a meeting without government permission under the Public Emergency Regulations.