Porirua’s Mayor is urging residents not to be afraid of a large Mongrel Mob tangi expected to travel through the city tomorrow.
Anita Baker told the Herald she expects Wednesday’s tangi will go smoothly, and people don’t need to panic.
A large number of gang members are expected to gather at the Porirua Mob headquarters before travelling through the city to Whenua Tapu cemetery, where they will lay one of their members to rest after he was killed in a motorcycle crash last week.
It’s the second tangi for the Porirua Mob in less than a month. Three weeks ago, Mongrel Mob members gathered to farewell 18-year-old Rikki Enoka, who was also killed in a motorbike crash.
More than 50 infringement notices for riding dangerously on a vehicle were handed out after Enoka’s tangi, with two people arrested and four vehicles impounded.
Baker says the council will work alongside police on Wednesday to ensure the procession goes as smoothly as possible.
“We usually leave all the lights green so they can get through them quickly,” Baker said.
“We have a number of these events and it’s just better and safer for our community to have them move through quickly rather than having them waiting at the lights.”
Police say they will be present at Wednesday’s tangi, ready to arrest rule breakers if necessary – but would rather they didn’t have to.
“Police urge those involved to be considerate of other road users and adhere to alert level restrictions.”
Baker says the Mongrel Mob members in the Porirua community are normally well behaved.
“They’re just normal people – they just wear red coats, that’s the difference.”
The two tangi come ahead of the Mongrel Mob’s 50th anniversary, which will see dozens of gang members congregate in Porirua.
Baker says she doesn’t anticipate any trouble from this event either, and she expects the Mob will abide by the current Covid-19 restrictions.
“I think they’re probably keeping it under the hundred [people] – I know for the [Enoka] funeral they had a bit more but for their AGM they’re keeping it under.”
The meeting will coincide with Waitangirua’s latest vaccination drive – so Baker says she’ll be encouraging any unvaccinated gang members to pop over the road and get immunised.
Above all, she wants peace in the community.
“I just want everyone not to be scared of each other – we’re just Porirua residents and we should respect each other, so come to the vaccination day and get vaxxed , there’s plenty of options and that includes the Mongrel Mob.
“We all get along, we’re a very diverse community in Porirua and we make it work.”