Churches, charities and societies are excellent devices for personal empire building, and in the New Zealand environment not filing your returns on time, accurately, or – to be frank – at all, has really had very little backlash.
If it wasn’t for our series by Owl, a few unions would still not be filing theirs.
Now it seems Brian Tamaki wants to obfuscate the money trail rather than explain to the New Zealand public how much he got and what he’s doing with it.
Controversial Destiny Church has been issued overdue notices after 14 affiliated charities are late filing their annual returns.
The church’s tax-exempt status is under the microscope after the late filing. Previous returns from the charities totalled several million dollars.
Six Destiny-affiliated charities, which received a combined $5.5m in donations in the most recent returns, are more than a year overdue in filing statements with the public charities register.
During the same period, Bishop Brian Tamaki has repeatedly asked churchgoers to donate to pay for the church’s new multi-million-dollar City of God in Manukau.
When unveiling plans for Destiny’s City of God in 2012, Tamaki said: “I don’t care what the media say, I don’t care what your relatives say, I don’t care what the world says, nobody should be not tithing.”
An Internal Affairs spokeswoman said they were actively seeking overdue annual returns from a number of charities associated with the Destiny Church.
Charities could be deregistered if they “significantly and persistently” failed to comply with the Charities Act.
14 affiliated charities not filing returns is obviously the outcome of something deliberate. It’s not like one or two are tardy. Incorporated societies and charities have been taking the tax payer for a ride for… for ever. I for one welcome any moves to throw some sunlight on it. Read more »