Fifth, small anti-vax mandate protest at Auckland Domain

Author
Tom Dillane, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Sat, 27 Nov 2021, 12:02PM
(Photo / Brett Phibbs)
(Photo / Brett Phibbs)

Fifth, small anti-vax mandate protest at Auckland Domain

Author
Tom Dillane, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Sat, 27 Nov 2021, 12:02PM

About 100 to 200 people have drifted in for today's anti-lockdown and anti-vaccination mandate protest at Auckland Domain. 

The protest is the fifth since the beginning of October. 

Where a crowd of thousands of people last week congregated on the Domain fields, children's cricket games are being played. 

It was expected the midday rally might be organised by a different group than the Destiny Church-aligned Freedoms & Rights Coalition. 

A flyer advertising the "Millions March" travelling from the Domain to the Mercy Hospital in Epsom has been circulating online this week. 

Another protest was reportedly scheduled for today at Parliament in Wellington, but at this stage that was not in evidence. 

For the third time in less than two months, controversial Destiny Church leader Brian Tamaki was called before a judge on Tuesday regarding new allegations he violated Covid-19 lockdown orders. 

However, he will be allowed to remain on bail with altered bail conditions that bar him explicitly from attending protests at Auckland Domain. 

Auckland District Court Judge Steve Bonnar QC, clearly showing frustration, issued the decision hours after Brian Tamaki was summoned to an Auckland police station alongside wife and church co-founder Hannah Tamaki. 

"You have been skating on very thin ice today," the judge said. "I have seriously considered whether you should be remanded in custody." 

The anti-lockdown and anti-vaccine mandate protesters have previously met in Auckland Domain on October 2, 16 and 30 and November 20. 

Each time they drew between 2000 and 5000 people. 

Yesterday, 18,092 New Zealanders were administered a Covid-19 vaccine. 

The organisation of the previous four protests is aligned with Destiny Church and their leader Brian Tamaki and others have appeared in court over breaching the Public Health Act. 
 
Both Brian and Hannah Tamaki appeared and spoke on stage at last Saturday's Domain protest to recognise the workers who had lost their job for refusing to be vaccinated. 
 
The Auckland War Memorial Museum was closed last Saturday, and is again today according to its Facebook page. 

On November 13, the Freedoms & Rights Coalition orchestrated a "Great Gridlock" protest which attempted to block Auckland's highways with a motorcade of slow moving vehicles. Traffic was delayed on Auckland highways for a few hours as a result. 

Brian Tamaki was first called to court on October 12, accused of helping to organise and promote an October 2 lockdown protest at the same location. 

For information on the safety of the Covid-19 vaccine and other things you need to know, listen to our podcast Science Digest with Michelle Dickinson: 

He was granted bail by Judge Broke Gibson, but under the conditions he not "organise or attend any protests in breach of any Covid-19 level requirement" and not "use the internet for the purpose of organising, attending or encouraging non-compliance with the Covid-19 Public Health Response Act 2020". 

However, he issued a statement just hours later promoting a follow-up protest at the same spot the next weekend. He returned to court about one week later, after attending the October 16 protest. 

A crowd of about 100 supporters assembled outside the Auckland City Police Station on Tuesday after the couple were summoned to meet with police, breaking into applause as the couple arrived. 

"I am basically innocent," Tamaki told the crowd as he entered the police station. "I have done nothing wrong."