A request has been made to Methodist Church Ministers serving the Northern Division to help Police reduce criminal activities.
The Methodist Church’s Northern Division Minister’s Intensive In-Service Training was held at the Nasea Methodist Church this past week whereby the Fiji Police Force was given the opportunity to speak to Minister’s on issues concerning the Criminal landscape in the Northern Division.
The Acting Commissioner of Police Rusiate Tudravu highlighted the five most prevalent cases in the Northern Division over the last four-year period which included Burglary & Aggravated Robbery, Theft, Assault, Drugs and Sexual Offences.
A/CP Tudravu said Police were reaching out to Church leaders to help tackle crimes as Police were at the receiving end after the crime had been committed and there was a need to address the why part which churches could help with.
He said the purpose of presenting the statistics specifically on issues affecting the Northern Division was so the Church Ministers could know the prevalent crimes occurring close to where they were serving.
“I plead with the Methodist Church Minister’s to work with Police by knowing what is happening around you and be able to deliver targeted sermons and programs so that it can help prevent criminal activities”.
“Crimes are committed by those who are conflicted and have lost a sense of right and wrong and the Church plays a significant role in nurturing an individual’s moral compass to stay on the right path and avoid falling onto the wrong side of the law”.
A/CP Tudravu said Church leaders are highly respected members of their communities and have a major influence in their members lives.
“In any community especially in communal settings, there’s the head of the village and right next to him is the talatala, and in the absence of the Village head, people turn to the talatala for guidance and direction”.
“This is why we are reaching out to the Methodist Church and all Church leaders in Fiji, to help fight crime and we need your sermons and programs to target the groups who are highly likely to offend and prevent them from committing crimes”.
Members of the Forum heard that the prevalent offender age groups were aged between 18 – 35 years.
The presentation was also an outcome of the Acting Commissioner’s courtesy visit to the President of the Methodist Church Reverend Epineri Vakadewavosa requesting the Church’s support in the fight against crime.