By Michael Coles
Within hours of Brian Tamaki arriving at Mt Eden Prison on Monday 17 January, arrested for alleged breach of bail conditions, the Voices for Freedom team came out in support of the Destiny Church leader via a Telegram post.
Tamaki’s arrest, by mutual agreement at 8am, relate to him speaking at Freedoms & Rights Coalition events to protest the government’s response to Covid-19. His arrest coincided with the start of the Pfizer vaccine rollout to 5 to 11 year olds.
The events challenged the government, its ongoing lockdowns, vaccine mandates, and segregation, “all of which have a devastating impact on the health and well-being of Kiwis and New Zealand”.
VFF says: “The coalition has hosted and run a large number of powerful demonstrations peacefully and positively. Many Voices For Freedom supporters have participated in these rallies, recognising shared concerns about the erosion of fundamental rights and freedoms.
“Voices For Freedom is deeply concerned over the continued destruction of freedoms recognised under our Bill of Rights Act and the incursions on freedom of expression, peaceful assembly, association, movement, and the right to manifestation of religion and belief.
“The arrest, ongoing censorship and persecution of anyone speaking against the approved government narrative around Covid is strongly condemned by Voices for Freedom.”
You can keep up to date with developments at Freedoms & Rights Facebook page.
VFF point to the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990 which include:
- 13 Freedom of thought, conscience, and religion – Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion, and belief, including adopting and holding opinions without interference.
- 14 Freedom of expression – Everyone has the right to freedom of expression, including the freedom to seek, receive, and impart information and opinions of any kind in any form.
- 15 Manifestation of religion and belief – Every person has the right to manifest that person’s religion or belief in worship, observance, practice, or teaching, either individually or in community with others, and either in public or in private.
- 16 Freedom of peaceful assembly – Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly.