Churches empty as members go to poll

National, Normal

The National, Monday July 9th, 2012

CHURCHES in the Kerowagi district, Chimbu province, were largely empty yesterday as people there went to the polls in the 2012 general election.
It was the first time since independence that a district went to vote on a Sunday.
Christians in the district were unhappy with the polling schedule and feared that they would elect corrupt leaders into parliament because they had to vote on a Sunday.
A woman regional candidate, Dere Cecilia Kimagl, said yesterday morning at a Catholic church at Mingende the priest did not start mass at 8am because there was hardly anyone inside.
Cecilia, who is a member of the parish council, said there were only 12 in the church that could hold up to 1,000 people.
She said with people throughout the nation praying for good leaders, it was not good to conduct polling on a Sunday.
She said the government should respect the Lord’s Day and allow people to attend church.
Cecilia said the people needed God’s wisdom and knowledge to elect good leaders.
She said God would not bless whoever was elected into parliament when Electoral Commissioner forced people to go to the polls on his day.
Cecilia said while on her way to mass yesterday, she saw other Christian churches equally as empty.
She said all the people had gathered at their respective polling venue to vote.
She appealed to the Electoral Commissioner to make this the first and that all polling in the 2017 national elections must be on week days.Other districts in the province went to the polls on Saturday.