The personification of evil – Gideon Tait and the New Zealand Police Force

Gideon Tait, a rather short tenure as Assistant Commissioner; why?

In the summer of 2001 a contributor to Lauda Finem travelled to the small hamlet of Mt Pleasant in New Zealand’s South Island and again in the summer of 2006 -2007 to Auckland to interview an elderly nun, Sister Josephine (Constance) Oates RSJ prior to her passing on July 22nd 2007.

Sister Jo, as she preferred to be addressed, was a member of Mother Mary McKillop‘s order of Josephite‘s. Sister Jo was born to a working class family in the East Cape district of New Zealand (Tolaga Bay). She was an extraordinarily humble, but well educated and politically astute, woman who had chosen to dedicate her entire life to assisting the poor and educating New Zealand’s working class families; in particular their children.

Sister Jo admired “honesty and integrity” and “despised corruption”, in fact the last school in which she was to teach before her retirement still bestows an anual award on one of it’s pupils in her name; the award is unsurprisingly for “Special Character”

Sister Jo, during the last interview, out of good conscience, detailed, for our contributor, the machinations of the new elite in the 1970’s through to the mid 1990’s (men such as Prime Minister Norman Kirk and latterly Sir Geoffrey Palmer), and her own extraordinary inside take on the Catholic Church and its corrupt dealings with the  party political elite and Police hierarchy in New Zealand at the time.

Lauda Finem will in due course be publishing the (as always well researched) personal accounts of Sister Jo and her disdain for the New Zealand Police force and in particular a man that she termed “the personification of evil”, New Zealand’s Assistant Commissioner of police ( mid 1974 – December 1975) Mr Gideon Tait.

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