Destiny Church's Brian Tamaki pushes back on allegations he lives an extravagant life and should use money he spends on luxury items to fund his Man Up programme.
The self-proclaimed bishop's been involved in a public falling out with Government ministers after Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said funding for his Man Up programme wasn't properly applied for.
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Tamaki said the scheme is "extremely successful" in helping men who have been involved in violent offending and addiction, but Davis said those claims have not been verified.
On the Ryan Bridge Drive show on Magic Talk on Wednesday, Bridge asked Tamaki whether, instead of seeking taxpayer funding for his scheme, he should instead use money he spends on cars, holidays and other luxury items.
"That's nasty," Tamaki replied, saying he doesn't live an extravagant life compared to other Aucklanders.
"It's not extravagant according to house prices in Auckland, and what I drive, it's not extravagant compared to many middle, working-class Aucklanders."
While Tamaki wouldn't tell Bridge what sort of car he drives, media outlets over the last few years have reported the purchase of vehicles which sell for more than $70,000 by his wife, Hannah.
In 2017, TVNZ reported she had purchased a new Mercedes-Benz which sells for $207,900.
Tamaki also said that Man Up didn't need Government funding, and it would continue being funded by Man Up organisations as it had been for a while.
"It's not about the money, we don't need to be funded. If that is the case, it doesn't need to be funded because we have been doing it for five years on our funding, paying for it ourselves."
Tamaki defended comments he made on Twitter that he had been subject to a "political gang rape" by Ardern, Davis and Finance Minister Grant Robertson, saying it was in reference to several comments by them criticising him.