TPP protest stops Christchurch traffic

Protests hit Christchurch
Protests hit Christchurch

Several hundred protesters stopped traffic on a main street in Christchurch on Saturday afternoon before storming a shopping mall.

The Rally for Democracy called for a halt to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), and there were similar marches in Auckland, Wellington and seven other cities around the country.

"It's all about connecting the dots that we face in the 21st century and particularly looking at our economy and the way that's set up," says organiser Gen de Spa.

The group then made its way to a bank, where spray-on glue and paper cut-outs were used, before making its way to Westfield mall, where security staff were powerless to stop them.

Police were on hand, while shoppers were stopped in their tracks.

The marchers then made their way out of the mall and back onto Riccarton Rd, disrupting traffic again.

Among the marchers was Christchurch mayoral candidate John Minto.

"We want the Christchurch City Council to become a TPP-free zone, in other words - declare Christchurch a TPP-free zone," said Mr Minto.

Motorists stuck behind the protestors were just left frustrated about having their freedoms removed.

"It's ridiculous; it's not acceptable," one told Newshub.

"It's not much fun is it? We just want to go home," said another.

But despite the disruption to some people's Saturday events, police said the group was peaceful and no arrests were made.