PM must rule out summer holiday ‘timeshares’

In a round of confusing media appearances yesterday, the Government piled yet more needless uncertainty on long-suffering Aucklanders by suggesting families will be allocated timeslots to be allowed to leave the city over summer.

“It seems everyone except the Government can see that this idea is unworkable and ridiculous,” says Leader of the Opposition Judith Collins.

“People in Auckland who have put up with three months of lockdown need certainty and a plan.

“What they don’t need is Jacinda Ardern and Chris Hipkins going on the radio threatening them with another Government-run lottery to be allowed to travel over summer.

“The Government seems to be trying to make up for its negligent lack of planning over the last 18 months by publically workshopping new ideas on the fly.

“It has to stop.

“Jacinda Ardern needs to rule out this ridiculous idea immediately. Then she needs to give New Zealanders a clear, unambiguous timetable for when they will be allowed to travel.

“It’s worth remembering that the only reason we are stuck in this situation is because the Government completely dropped the ball on the vaccine rollout.

“It was slow to set up and fund a negotiating team. Slow to order the vaccines. Slow to set up a booking system. Slow to develop proof of vaccination. Slow to roll out a vaccine advertising campaign. Slow to set a vaccine target. And slow to realise that some parts of the country might be harder to vaccinate.

“The time for going slow is over.

“Most Kiwis have done the right thing and got vaccinated. Now the Government needs to do the right thing too.

“National’s ‘Back in Business’ plan calls for all internal borders to be removed once we get to 85 per cent vaccination, or December 1, whichever comes first.

“The Government needs to adopt our plan, and set a date for when New Zealanders will be free to travel around their own country.”