Destiny Church co-founder Hannah Tamaki has been stood down from the Maori Women's Welfare League and league branches she established have been cut loose.

The wife of Bishop Brian Tamaki was told yesterday of the decision made by the league's executive board, Maori TV's Te Kaea news programme reported last night.

The suspension comes after a league investigation into Mrs Tamaki's bid last year to become its president.

She has been stripped of the right to hold a regional office for three years, and the league has disestablished three Auckland branches she set up.


Neither Mrs Tamaki nor league officials could be contacted last night.

But Mrs Tamaki's spokesman, Richard Lewis, told Te Kaea the move was uncalled for.

"Hannah will be disappointed at the length of the stand-down and the fact that the national executive has moved to even take this step."

Mrs Tamaki was considering appealing against the ban, he said.

Mrs Tamaki's involvement in last year's election made it the most closely followed in decades.

The league disqualified her from standing, but she won a High Court order to gain reinstatement in the eight-way race, won by Katerina O'Brien.

After voting closed in the election, league general manager Jacqui Te Kani contacted Mrs Tamaki to tell her she was under inquiry regarding allegations of misconduct.

These included objections to the way she had set up 10 Destiny branches of the league - which the High Court disqualified from voting in the presidential election.