Not only is the Destiny Church facing all sorts of internal ructions relating to its financial affairs and control, but the Christian political party that is an outgrowth of Brian Tamaki’s church - the Family Party - has just applied to cancel its registration with the Electoral Commission, and hence dissolve itself. The Family Party – one of three Christian-based parties that sought the party vote in the 2008 election – originally went under the name of 'Destiny New Zealand', until a major reconfiguration occurred prior to the 2008 general election.
The Family party history
Centred on the evangelical and fundamentalist Destiny Church of televangelist, Brian Tamaki, the Family party was essentially a reconfigured and re-branded version of the Destiny New Zealand Christian political party that operated between 2003 and 2007. Tamaki and his church wound up the Destiny party in an attempt to create a larger Christian party that would incorporate the main Christian leaders from rival parties, including Gordon Copeland and Philip Field. Such a grand merger never eventuated, but the new party launched and registered in 2007, with Destiny Church’s Richard Lewis as leader and the deputy leadership taken by Paul Adams, a former United Future MP and pastor at the Pentecostal City Impact Church. The party concentrated its efforts on winning votes from Māori and Pacific voters, especially in South Auckland, but in the 2008 election won only 8,176 party votes (or 0.35 per cent of the total vote).
The deregistration process
The application to cancel the Family Party’s registration with the Electoral Commission is made under Part 4 of the Electoral Act 1993, and has been done so by the party’s secretary, Anne Williamson. The Electoral Commission says that anyone who wishes to comment on the application may do so by sending an email to email [email protected] by 5.00pm, Wednesday, 10 March 2010.