31 Jul 2009

Fiji Methodist clergy appear in court early

6:18 pm on 31 July 2009

The Methodist clergy arrested last week for contravening Fiji's Public Emergency Regulations have appeared in court two weeks early.

The church's deputy general secretary says church leaders bailed last week along with ministers and people arrested this week appeared in court this morning instead of the next scheduled court hearing which was August the 13th.

Reverend Tevita Banivanua says he doesn't know the outcome of today's hearing but the group's lawyer has said he would try to get a change to the bail conditions to allow the clergy to attend meetings.

"So that they will not also destroy the church because in the church we have a democratic process that decisions are made through meetings so that was what our lawyer mentioned to us yesterday so he was going to ask, I don't know whether they have succeeded or not."

Reverend Tevita Banivanua of Fiji's Methodist church.