Police are investigating the death of a 17-year old boy in the premises of the One World Church at Tacirua.
Police spokeswoman Ema Mua said they believe the boy was suffering from epilepsy but was not taken to hospital when he was under attack from the ailment.
She said police were treating the case as serious because they had received information that the members of the church had been against their members being taken to the hospital if they were sick.
One of the sect’s belief is that members with a sickness are not allowed to go to the hospital but instead, rely on help from above to recover or be cured from the sickness.
They say they would rather die with a sickness or ailment rather than go against their sect’s belief.
Meanwhile, yesterday none of the members of the church were willing to give any information pertaining to the boy’s death or the whereabouts of the boy’s parents.
The leader of the One World Church, Safaira Kua, was not available for any comment yesterday afternoon.
The leader of a religious sect will be questioned by police if found to be negligent leading to the death of a teenager, says police spokesman Corporal Suliano Tevita.
He said the leader of the church, who was known as Marama Vada, had criticised police for making the issue public.
Ms Vada said police should wait for the post mortem report before accusing the church.[…]
Controversy surrounds the unorthodox healing methods of a new church in Fiji which has resulted in two deaths.
Radio Legend reports that a soldier given healing coconut oil by the One World Church and told not to take any other medicine died last weekend.
The soldier, who had kidney problems, was found dead in his room.
A retired nurse had died earlier after she was also told to stop taking hospital medicine and drink only the church’s coconut oil.
But the One World Church has defended its method of faith healing.
A spokesman, Elia Vesikula, says they believe the coconut oil symbolises the Holy Spirit and will heal any sickness.
Fiji’s prime minister, Laisenia Qarase, is reported to have consulted a woman who claims to have powers to heal and predict the future.
The Fiji Sun reports that the woman, known as the Marama Vada, says she offered advice to Mr Qarase and the former vice president, Ratu Jope Seniloli, on matters affecting them.
A spokesman for her One World Church, former television presenter Elia Vesikula, says about 13,000 people have flocked there to have their mental, physical, spiritual and financial problems solved.
Mr Vesikula says the Marama Vada has the power to predict the future, see through the hearts and minds of people and heal the sick.
Two weeks ago Mr Qarase was ordained as a Methodist lay preacher hours after he was challenged by a Tongan minister who warned of more coups in Fiji if its leaders did not preach from the pulpit.