Dear Destiny Church – it is your democratic duty NOT to pay the $24,000 invoice from the Christchurch City Council


Christchurch City Council has sent Destiny Church pastor Derek Tait an invoice for $24,000 to pay for traffic management costs on several recent marches in the city.

This is outrageous.

I strongly disagree with most of the views of the Freedom and Rights Coalition but to try to charge them for costs associated with a public protest in a democratic country is fundamentally wrong at every level. I’ve been involved in helping organise many protest marches over more than 40 years and no organisation I’ve ever been involved with has ever paid a single cent to any city council to exercise the right to public protest.

If the Christchurch City Council has its way then the only groups able to organise public protest marches will be those who can afford tens of thousands in traffic management fees. This is “user-pays” on steroids and a full frontal attack on our democracy.

Derek Tait is right to refuse to pay – in fact it is his democratic duty not to pay as this would set a dangerous precedent.

Don’t just read this piece – write to Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel and tell her this is a direct attack on democracy and she must withdraw the invoice and apologise now. Email


  1. Destiny Church is run by a bunch of thugs, many ex Gangsters amongst them imho. Tax free religious organization to boot.

    • The question is not who they are and what are they like but if there is one rule for all and the dangerous precedent for all future demonstrations. This thogether with vilification of the protestors, calling them names, blaming them of extreme right wing conspiracies with various plans of witch-hunting through social media and hate speech bill impending will end in curtailing civil liberties of all of us.

    • Ngungukai Being an ex-gangster is much better than being a current gangster, and I don’t think that working as a male prostitute on Karangahape Road is a criminal offence, nor a moral offence, although riding big noisy motorbikes should certainly be both, and violating the peace and the homes of nice old Cranmer Square near the heart of the historic education precinct is a more chilling sort of symbol than it may appear to be, so these sort of prolonged protestor challenges impacting so meanly upon innocent others should certainly not expect to go unchallenged.

  2. Destiny Church has used those that follow it down a rabbit hole of misinformation and fear with regard to the vaccine and mandates. This has caused a divide in the Nation that is not healthy. They hate Labour because they see them as the party that supports abortion and gay rights and are trying to unseat them through the back door with their fight against the governments covid protection policies.
    They talk of freedom but do not show any freedom or respect to those people who live in Cramer Square who have been inconvenienced by their meeting for some time now .

    • Trevor Sennitt Most of the Cranmer Square protestors look as if they belong in the looney bin – not that I wish to disparage mental health sufferers – but they’re behaving like medieval halfwits towards the locals.

      • Shocking comment. Please don’t comment unless you can be civil to those who may have or may not have mental health issues.

    • because it generates cash from his ‘congregation’
      if there was a quid in it he’d be saying the earth is flat he knows cos god told him

  3. Nope. Destiny purportedly functions according to the teachings of Jesus, therefore, “ Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”

    Destiny must pay up as is their civil duty or burn forever in the everlasting fires of hell, and so should anybody else who trashes public places. Crying ‘democracy’ doesn’t change the fact that rate payers and tax payers are the ones who have to fork up and why should they ?

    • Ever actually been on a demo Applewood, where you sometimes have to have traffic support, much the same as a big rugby match!

      • Michael I don’t know if Destiny is causing the sort of traffic issues around Cranmer Square that gridlocked the area around Parliament, but they are presumptuous anti-social hypocrites messing up other people’s daily lives, and I also think that they are waning, and are destined to fade away in the near future having failed to make much of a footprint anywhere. If they do cause significant traffic problems, and continue with self-serving protests, and refuse to respond to reasonable requests to vamoose, then they should be prepared to pay – gather up more widows’ mites – increase the tithes of their sad followers- gift Bish Brian and wifey less generously – they’ll cope.

      • The meetings in Cranmer Square are not protests or demonstrations–they are cult meetings held to enhance the coffers of the Leader by persuading the tithed to cough up more money. The stalls that accompany these meetings are commercial enterprises and may even be tax-exempt.

    • Then if you are concerned about ratepayers having to foot the bill for a protest, why are you not concerned at how the labour National Socialists just blow millions of tax payer dollars on anything other than what the people need.

  4. It’s like that ole ‘Bitument’ scam that pops up occasionally.

    Where a polite Irishman and his mates knock on your door and talk to you about the state of your driveway and how they just happen to have some bitumen left from a job they have just finished next door! They make you an offer that you can’t refuse!
    But, next thing you know they’ve covered your driveway in shit and demand you pay them for the cost of doing the job!

    In a court, it’s known as ‘extortion!’
    Does this sound familiar?

  5. Protesting is not a licence to ignore laws at one’s whim.
    Protesting is not a free camping nor licence to trespass.

    There are legitimate ways to have your voice of protest heard, our society allows for this.

    If one chooses to break laws in order to give a protest more impact then one must accept the cost of making such a choice it is part of stating the strength of one’s convictions, – except of course, if you are dishonest cowards, then the consequences will simply be imposed upon you.

  6. like all evangelicals they pick and mix rightwing bits from mostly the old testament..if hippy jesus returned they would be the ones to crucify him, they rarely cite the new testament preferring the angry old bearded man to the jesus who only exists on their t-shirts and bumper stickers….there real preference is fire and brimstone.

    on a more relevant note if you fund a protest then you’re liable for damages, if you encourage nutbars that’s on you..most demos you’d only find a few discarded placards and maybe some leaflets not a literal shitpit….fuck destiny church and all who sail in her.

  7. Most protests don’t occupy land, illegally park and block roads. Love you Minto, but this is not a protest like all others. I salute Dalziel & Council …it’s time people start having consequences for their actions.

    • Leave occupying land out of it they were charged for traffic management. That is outrageous and sets a precedent for future protests.

      I loathe Destiny but I have been on hundreds of demos in my life and do not want other demos to have this ridiculous charge thrown at them.

      Rugby matches block traffic!

  8. At the moment the anti-vaxers, and anti- mandate persons, and the disenfranchised, and the dirty politics others, appear to be operating like roving bands protesting wherever it takes their fancy, and making anti-democratic demands, like wanting Parliament to be dissolved. We cannot as a country afford to provide the usual sort of tax-payer funded supports for them, if this is the way that they are going to behave.

  9. John have you ever thought how much your protests cost the tax payer and if that money could have been better spent.
    . When you stood as mayor of Christchurch you wanted free bus travel low rent public housing . Nothing is free someone pays and that someone is usually the hard working person that gets shat on by the wealthy and abused by those in power.
    This Destiny Church is ruining the lives of the rate payers in Cramer Square and are doing the Devils work in turning people against one another over the vaxination. They need to be stood up against by the council as the police are too weak

    • When you stood as mayor of Christchurch you wanted free bus travel low rent public housing . Nothing is free some

      Minto explained at the time how this would be paid for. And it wasn’t by you and I.

    • He does reflect he says he loathes them BUT this sets a precedent for future protests. Rugby games will they be charged for traffic management.

  10. if it was a normal protest you might have a point but these antisocial jerks are hijacking public spaces and making a nuisance of themselves as well as trashing the environment. the freedom protestors want the “freedom” to be arseholes and give the middle finger to the people of Aotearoa, and expect “freedom” from consequences. Sorry sunshine the law and democracy don’t work like that

    • So if the Council don’t agree with the views of the protest then it is okay for them to charge – scary thought really. I am sure they won’t be charging the Rugby crowds for blocking traffic, oh but then they are nice.

  11. The front line police officer who asked Trevor Puerile Mallard to turn off the sprinklers has tested positive for Covid as has most of his team. F..k Trevor Mallard watching safely from up on a balcony – what an apology of a man – and begone Destiny, organising super spreading of lies up and down the country for no purpose other than to advance their deranged avaricious tawdry selves, and whining like selfish brats when asked grow up. It would be wrong to enable them in the name of democracy.

  12. John’s point is fair enough, don’t let the authorities decide who pays to exercise their democratic rights and who can do it for free.

    But, I won’t support Destiny on this “till hell freezes over”. They are big and offensive enough to advocate for themselves-because the fuckers ignored alert level requirements and tried to undermine the COVID public health strategy.


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