Supporters cheer as Brian Tamaki blasts 'parasite' immigrants at Waitangi Day service

Brian Tamaki's supporters cheered as the Destiny Church leader delivered a speech at Waitangi where he described immigrants as "parasites" and said Māori and Pākehā are becoming refugees in New Zealand.

Tamaki blasted the Government for "selling off the country" to foreign powers - making multiple references to China - and said it's time to take New Zealand back.

"The Labour Government has been the worst selling off land," Tamaki, described in the Waitangi Day service schedule booklet as an 'Apostle Bishop', said. "China is taking control of our water."

Tamaki talked down about immigrants - as he has done in the past. He likened them to "termites and parasites" that "totally consume the host", suggesting New Zealand is the host and that Māori and Pākehā are being pushed out.

Tamaki said the Treaty of Waitangi should never have been signed the way it was, criticising the original British settlers of New Zealand for giving Māori what he seemed to think was an unfair deal on land.

"There should be plenty of resources for everybody, and enough provisions if people have those resources made available to them."

Tamaki said the Government is "not looking after our own first" and frequently talked about his disdain for the selling off of land - despite the Government introducing a foreign buyer's ban in 2018.

Race Relations Commissioner Meng Foon - who attended the Waitangi Day dawn service - described Tamaki's comments as shocking and utterly false.

Tamaki challenged Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to "take some action" drawing cheers from his supporters - but he did not suggest any specific action to take.

"We should drain the Wellington bureaucratic swamp," he said, and told his supporters to never vote for Labour again, also the National Party, because the former National-led Government "sold off our assets".

Brain Tamaki's wife Hannah launched a political party around this time last year called Coalition NZ, but later changed the name to Vision NZ because the Electoral Commission said the name was too confusing.

Last year, Hannah Tamaki suggested paying refugees to stay at home rather than coming to New Zealand, and promised to ban the construction of new "mosques, temples and other foreign buildings of worship", if elected.

Both Jacinda Ardern and Simon Bridges - leaders of the two largest political parties - have ruled out ever working with Hannah Tamaki's party.

To get into Parliament, Vision NZ would need 5 percent of the vote. Destiny Church has tried twice before under different party names and didn't even scratch 1 percent.

Brian Tamaki's address was in stark contrast to Cardinal John Dew, Archbishop of Wellington and Metropolitan of New Zealand, who spoke before the Destiny Church leader.

He talked up religious freedom and the importance of diversity and respecting differences.

"It is religious tolerance that is our heritage."

Tamaki and his supporters were not allowed into the Waitangi Grounds at first on Thursday morning with police concerned about them causing trouble, but they were eventually allowed to enter.

The Destiny Church leader has courted controversy over the years for suggesting non-heterosexual people somehow caused the Christchurch earthquakes.

He has also blamed abortion on "demonic forces", calling the medical procedure "Satan's attempt to kill God in effigy" and "premeditated murder".

 

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