26 Sep 2023
The announcement today of a hurdle of 90 per cent vaccination for each and every DHB in New Zealand condemns every Kiwi to months of more lockdowns and uncertainty, says Leader of the Opposition Judith Collins.
“Millions of New Zealanders have done the smart thing and gone out and got vaccinated. It is great we now have 86 per cent of Kiwis who have had at least one dose. But the reality is this last 4 per cent will be the hardest to achieve. Then to achieve this in every DHB in New Zealand could take months.
“I worry these targets will either go the same way as KiwiBuild and the soon-to-be cancelled, light rail project, and simply drag on for ever without success.
“How is it fair that small pockets of the country can hold everyone else to ransom? This is far beyond the team of five million. This is the team of 50,000 people who refuse to be vaccinated holding everyone else back.
“National’s plan is clear: at 85 per cent full vaccination or by December 1, whichever comes first, we reopen our economy again both domestically and internationally.
“This pathway is a safe way forward if New Zealand invests in vaccine certificates, rapid antigen testing and contact tracing.
“The reality is, it would be safe to move to a system based around vaccine certificates right now, as parts of Australia have, but Labour have failed to deliver the basic website this requires. A million double-vaccinated Aucklanders are stuck at home because Labour can’t deliver a vaccine certificate.
“Today was also bad news for Aucklanders separated from family members across New Zealand, with no certainty provided for when the Auckland boundary would be lifted. Again, if Labour had delivered vaccine certificates, fully vaccinated Aucklanders could be traveling today, with a rapid antigen test at the border.
“Labour failed to prepare and plan for Delta, and now New Zealanders are being locked down for months on end.
“Labour’s plan, which changes by the week and is clearly being made up as they go along, is deeply confusing and will just mean more anguish for Aucklanders and the rest of the country.
“Jacinda Adern is holding a stop sign before we even arrive at the traffic lights.”