NZ govt to evaluate country’s move to COVID-19 Alert Level 1
The New Zealand government will update the public after a Cabinet meeting on June 8 on whether the country could move to COVID-19 Alert Level 1 next week.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the country would be moving to the next alert level as soon as next week once they have evaluated the pros and cons of the move.
“If and only if there are no unexpected cases over the coming days then we could be in a position to move to Level 1 that week,” the Prime Minister said.
It has been more than two months since Adern announced the COVID-19 alert level system and enforced a nationwide lockdown along with the rules that go with each alert level.
Rules for Alert Level 1 will be revealed at a press conference on Wednesday.
Ardern said there have been no new cases of the coronavirus in the country for more than a week now, adding that this has exceeded government’s expectations.
But, she said, despite the news that there are no new cases reported recently, there are still risks, like asymptomatic carriers of the coronavirus being in contact with others.
New Zealand National Party leader Todd Muller said on Monday the Government needs to explain to New Zealanders why it won’t consider a move to Alert Level 1 for another week.
“Kiwis have made enormous sacrifices to flatten the curve, but if their efforts still aren’t enough to move to Level 1 then the Government must explain why,” Muller said.
Muller said businesses on the brink of closure have been left in limbo too long.
“It’s time for the Government to be clear about what conditions need to be met for the move to Level 1,” he said.
According to Muller, Level 1 should mean businesses can return to full capacity, transport networks can resume without constraints, marriages can be properly celebrated and loved ones can be appropriately mourned.
“The sooner small businesses know what Level 1 will look like, the easier it will be for the backbone of our economy to start repairing itself,” he said.
New Zealand has been under Alert Level 2 since May 14.
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