September 07, 2012

Church, vanua work together: Ex-senator

September 6, 2012 | Filed under: Fiji News | Posted by: newsroom

Ratu Jekesoni Yavalanavanua, a former senator now living in Somosomo, Taveuni, Vanua Levu, has called on the church and leaders of the vanua to work together.

He was responding to a Fiji Sun report where the Catholic Church in Fiji, through the Vicar-General Father Beni Kaloudau, felt that there was no role in Fiji for the Great Council of Chiefs (GCC) although some  iTaukeis, in their submissions to the Constitution Committee, have called for its reinstatement.

“If they exclude the GCC, then they are pushing the vanua away. The church, the chiefs and the vanua should work together for a peaceful and religious nation,” Ratu Jekesoni said.

“Catholics should be neutral. They should not comment on the vanua and the GCC. They should look after the souls of their followers and not politics.

“There was no right for the Turaga Bete to speak against the GCC.”

Father Beni, in his submission to the Constitution Commission, reportedly said the GCC was an institution whose views would conflict with the views of an elected government.

Ratu Jekesoni said if church leaders were involved in politics, people would be led astray.

“I am not against the church but when they talk about the GCC and the land, they talk about our culture and tradition and the iTaukei people.”

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