Collins challenges Ardern to go to Auckland

Author
Thomas Coughlan, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Wed, 13 Oct 2021, 1:30PM
National leader Judith Collins. (Photo / NZ Herald)
National leader Judith Collins. (Photo / NZ Herald)

Collins challenges Ardern to go to Auckland

Author
Thomas Coughlan, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Wed, 13 Oct 2021, 1:30PM

National leader Judith Collins thinks Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern needs to visit Auckland to get a feel for how Aucklanders are coping in lockdown, which is now in its eighth week.

Collins said she might challenge Ardern to visit Auckland at the end of the next Parliamentary sitting block, which starts next Tuesday and runs for three weeks.

"I might suggest she does that [travel to Auckland] at the end of the next sitting block to get a sense of how other people are feeling," Collins said.

MPs are allowed to travel around the country, including to and from areas in lockdown, however rules from Speaker Trevor Mallard mean they must isolate for five days on return to Wellington, before they are allowed back at Parliament.

Collins herself recently returned to Auckland and will on Wednesday return to Wellington to isolate ahead of Parliament sitting next week.

She said Ardern could go to Auckland and do the same.

"She can do what I've done and commit to five days of self-isolation in Wellington," Collins said.

Collins said the time in Auckland was instructive.

"If she'd walked around Auckland this week, she would get a sense of just how frustrated and upset people are that they see no end in sight to what was supposed to be a short and sharp lockdown," Collins said.

"People are feeling extremely frustrated at the moment".

Collins said that people were wanting to see a plan from the Government which had more explicit targets set to it.

The Government has so far released a road map out of lockdown, but it has not given any detail on what would need to be achieved for the Government to loosen restrictions.