Tamaki threatens to cause prison revolts

A war of words is escalating between Minister of Corrections Kelvin Davis and head of Destiny Church Brian Tamaki, with Tamaki threatening to cause “inmates in every prison” if his ManUp programme isn’t allowed in prisons.

This morning at Newsroom: Davis knocks down Destiny’s ‘Man Up’ programme

Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis has stamped out any hope Brian Tamaki may have held of winning government funding to deliver his Man Up programme in prisons.

The Destiny Church founder has been vocal about what he says is the success of the 15-week programme to help “dysfunctional” men with a record of violent offending and addiction.

Tamaki has repeatedly criticised the Government for not funding him to deliver his programme in New Zealand prisons, despite never making a formal application as part of the Corrections tender process.

In December last year, Tamaki marched on Parliament with about 2000 supporters, talking about the high rates of Māori recidivism and touting his programme as a way to reduce Māori reoffending and incarceration rates.

“For all of my efforts to try and get into prison, they shut us down,” he said, referring to the Government.

Davis said there was no verified, independent research showing the programme has achieved success, and lashed out at Tamaki, calling his claims duplicitous.

He said that, despite what Tamaki claims, Man Up has never been shut out of prisons, and has never followed the proper application process.

Tamaki seems to be fighting an ongoing battle to get Man Up into prisons, and has had varying degrees of success with delivering ad hoc volunteer information services over the years.

But while Davis is the corrections minister, it seems unlikely Man Up will receive any formal government contract to administer its programme.

“Why would Corrections allow a group talking about waging war on society, into a prison,” Davis said, in reference to comments made by Tamaki in the wake of the Christchurch attack.

Davis also said Tamaki had been duplicitous in painting himself as the victim, during the “circus” on Parliament’s forecourt late last year.

“If they’re going to lie about the small stuff, how am I going to trust them with the big stuff?”

Later in the morning:

Davis (@NgatiBird) responded:

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30 Comments

  1. Duker

     /  29th April 2019

    Tamaki has become totally unhinged…. as if any thing related his program would even be allowed on prison grounds now – there were some volunteer work. Thats finished now.

    Reply
    • Kimbo

       /  29th April 2019

      As with Destiny’s demonstration outside the Al Noor mosque, and Tamaki’s championing of Israel Folau as a Christian martyr denied freedom of speech

      …one suspects he’s pitching and posturing more towards his membership, to reinforce the notion they are a beleaguered and persecuted yet righteous vanguard.

      Plus interesting to see the pitch to Maori – as per Peter Lineham’s insightful critique of Tamaki, in spite of the American prosperity gospel nonsense, Tamaki stands in the line of other Maori political Christian leaders and mystics such as Te Kooti, Te Whiti o Rongomai, Rua Kenana and Wiremu Ratana…

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  29th April 2019

        Kimbo; Mt Athos was on Simon Reeve’s Greece, quite a long segment. You can see it on Choice on Demand. What a marvellous surprise.

        Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  29th April 2019

      I don’t know what the rules are about religious groups in prisons, so can’t comment on that aspect, but he does seem to have become unhinged.He’s rambling. Didn’t he think that anyone would know that the programme hadn’t been approved because they hadn’t applied for it to be ?

      Perhaps his reasoning is that if there’s violence in the prison, he’ll be called in to stop it via his Man Up…Not if you caused it, Brian.

      I would be surprised if prisoners would be willing to risk losing things like time off for good behaviour for him and his programme.

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  29th April 2019

        I wonder if he knows that people can’t just prance in and visit prisoners. They have to apply and book and can be refused. Anyone whose aim is to cause a revolt is likely to not be let in as a visitor.

        Reply
  2. MaureenW

     /  29th April 2019

    What are you saying about that line Kimbo? Tamaki’s Not In that league or just another one?

    Reply
    • Kimbo

       /  29th April 2019

      Sorry, apologies. The latter – he’s another one.

      Hence Tamaki gains traction from the same demographic as they did, including and especially by referencing Treaty of Waitangi and similar injustice-to-Maori grievances. Hence his spiritual/political message has great resonance among impoverished Maori. And that’s why those in gangs respond to joining what is, in effect, a Christian gang.

      And that’s also why the add-on North American ponzi prosperity gospel via tithing and other giving gets a reaction. Why waste your dreams on lotto or the pokies when God’s guaranteed to give you riches?

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  29th April 2019

        He must have worked out a long time ago that even if it’s 10% of not much, if there are enough of the 10%s they add up to a nice little earner.The revolving door that cults like Destiny tend to have ensures that there are always mugs who’ll hand over 10% of their hard earned money to buy the Bishop another Harley and his wife another diamond ring before they realise that it won’t happen to them. .

        I am not materialistic (not a virtue, I just happen not to be that way inclined) so would not be attracted to his prosperity doctrine; that God rewards His followers with huge houses and expensive cars. I like the things I have.

        The most saintly person I have known was Father Sophrony of Maldon, and as a monk, he had virtually nothing. He would never have allowed the church at Maldon to be plastered with photos of him instead of icons. From what I have seen and heard of Destiny, there isn’t even a cross, just large photos of the Tamakis.

        Reply
    • Kimbo

       /  29th April 2019

      Tamaki has coopted the traditional Maori leadership requirement of “mana”/weightiness, and infused it with the Judaeo-Christian idea of “charismata”/gifting…from which we get the word “charisma”.

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  29th April 2019

        I read his book about the Tamakis, but a long time ago.

        Charisma has been terribly watered down as a concept, alas, and gone far from the Greek original meaning. Someone tell Brian Tamaki that the gifts meant are not material ones.

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  29th April 2019

          You will probably know of Fr Sophrony (memory eternal), Kimbo. He wrote “His Way is Mine.’

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  29th April 2019

            His Life is Mine, I mean.

            He was about to be canonised but there’s been an odd delay. He was and is a saint anyway. He spent his last years at St John the Baptist monastery in Essex. I was privileged to know him (slightly) for a short while.My late husband had known him for some years, of course.

            Reply
          • Gezza

             /  29th April 2019

            Very poignant for me watching Greg Boyed again. So sad.

            Reply
            • Kitty Catkin

               /  29th April 2019

              Who knows why someone does that ? I knew two people who did it with no warning signals, nothing to indicate that it was coming.

  3. Corky

     /  29th April 2019

    They should give Tamaki a one year contract..put up, or shut up. Most Maori focused help programmes have been abject failures. Tamaki by way of comparison has been reasonably successful. You should hear some of the testimonies from former gang members..it would make your hair curl. That said, I wonder if Tamaki is just replacing one gang with another? Some young Destiny members talk of being bossed about by former gang bangers.

    When I think about all the money governments have given to dead beat Maori organisations and schemes in the past, I see little reason to deny Tamaki.
    .

    Reply
    • Corky

       /  29th April 2019

      Just heard Kelvin on ”The Project.” Bugger me, Paddy Gower called Kelvin out for his rant and lack of ideas. That is just what Tamaki would say.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  29th April 2019

        Didn’t see that, the few times I’ve watched The Project have been enuf to make me not bother again. Just like Seven Sharp, that I nearly always skip because it’s mostly lite weight silliness & trivia to me.

        Tamaki threatening to cause a revolt in prison would kill his chances with ANY government.

        Even if his program has had a few successes I think most Kiwis & most Christians regard him & his prosperity gospel-type church & organisation with deep distaste & suspicion.

        Reply
        • Corky

           /  29th April 2019

          No doubt. He shot himself in the foot. However, let’s be realistic. Being a Christian organisation/church, means he was never a ‘goer’ to start with.

          ”Even if his program has had a few successes.” It’s not a few – it’s hundreds. However, no study has been conducted as to how lasting these changes are. There was the case of a previous ‘Man Up’ spokes person who said on” The Project” that women sometimes deserve to be hit ( he lost his job).

          https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/110565269/victim-blaming-man-up-course-facilitator-stood-down

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  29th April 2019

            Are you, have you ever been, or would you ever be, a member of Brian’s Destiny Church, Corks?

            If not, why not?

            Reply
            • Corky

               /  29th April 2019

              No. I don’t like people living off the hard work of others. That said, Tamaki started his church while still walking around Rotorua in bare feet . I believe he is genuine, but has become deluded as to what true Christianity is about.

              Why do you ask?

            • Gezza

               /  29th April 2019

              Just curious. You seem to be suggesting he’d be good for some people. But not for you.

            • Gezza

               /  29th April 2019

              You’re bringing up the problem (here & elsewhere today) that troubles me. Which is how do you teach people to love & respect & care about each other if they come from a background where they’ve never known it as the normal set of embedded values.

              And a good Christian church & community can be excellent at teaching those values & providing members with lots of support that they need & the reward of trust & love & forgiveness for the odd bit of backsliding, but Kimbo’s video above sets out the problem I have with what I understand to be Tamaki’s modus operandi – you can end up allowing HIM to dictate your thinking & what is right & wrong.

              Good churches don’t do that, imo.

            • Corky

               /  29th April 2019

              ”Just curious. You seem to be suggesting he’d be good for some people. But not for you.’

              Correct. I have an ability, so it seems, that few have on this blog. I seem to be able to compartmentalise the good and bad of any person or organisation, If I so choose.

            • Gezza

               /  29th April 2019

              You too, eh?

              I wonder how many more of us Jedis there are here?

          • Duker

             /  30th April 2019

            “let’s be realistic. Being a Christian organisation/church, means he was never a ‘goer’ to start with.”

            You need some ‘woke’ in you.
            Never heard of Salvation Army have you? Wake up
            I understand the Sallies have some government funding but when they really want to do something just use their own resources/ donations etc.

            methodists long have had social programs . same goes for catholics and even seventh day adventists ( Welcome Baby-The Welcome Baby initiative connects vulnerable mothers with supportive volunteers and provides baby clothes for their child’s first year of life along with other parenting information.)

            Its unbelievable your lack of awareness Corky . …well to be expected really.

            Reply
            • Corky

               /  30th April 2019

              Never heard of Salvation Army have you?

              Ever heard of Destiny Churches social services and schools?

              You seem to think I am a Tamaki cheer leader. See above.

              Opps, I forgot you are on my ”bad list’. Won’t happen again.

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  29th April 2019

      The testimonies from former gang members would make your hair curl ? Is it the before or after ones that are so bad that they make your hair curl (with horror, understood) ? Or both ?

      Just because other schemes have been funded and failed, this doesn’t mean that this one should also be funded. He can’t feel that strongly or he’d do it himself.

      Reply
  4. Stuff: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says Brian Tamaki going about getting programme in prison the wrong way

    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says it was irresponsible of Brian Tamaki to try to incite violence in the prison system just because he was not getting his way.

    “He shouldn’t, no-one should,” she said.

    On Monday, Ardern said it was her understanding that Tamaki was trying to make the claim he was denied when he never formally tried.

    “If this is a way of trying to get his programme into prisons, then he should focus on doing it properly.”

    The understanding on advice provided her was that a request for the programme had not gone through the right process.

    “We made the point time and time again that there was a process to go through. We are obligated to make sure that when anyone is seeking to put a programme into Corrections that there is a procurement process.

    “They have repeatedly criticised the Government for not allowing them into prisons, but then do nothing to formally make an attempt to enter into a process.”

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/112332984/prime-minister-jacinda-ardern-says-brian-tamaki-going-about-getting-programme-in-prison-the-wrong-way

    Reply
  5. Blazer

     /  30th April 2019

    ah the ‘Life of Brian’…any publicity is good publicity.

    A marketing programme at almost zero cost.

    Reply
  1. Tamaki threatens to cause prison revolts — Your NZ – NZ Conservative Coalition

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