“The Government needs to sharpen up if New Zealand is going to have any hope of surviving a multi-year pandemic,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
“News that the Cook Islands bubble won’t be open before at least May shows the Government isn’t up to the job of doing basic things.
“Hard working New Zealanders need the Government to do much better if we’re going to avoid an economic collapse while the rest of the world moves on.
“Travel between two places with no community transmission of the virus shouldn’t be this hard.
“Many New Zealanders will have forgotten that on 10 August last year the Prime Minister said quarantine free travel with the Cook Islands had been pushed back but would be up and running ‘before the end of the year,’ then Christmas came and went.
“By May it will be nine months since this was supposed to have been achievable.
“What does this say about when the Government considers it will be safe enough for quarantine free travel with Australia?
“If the Cooks is too tricky it means we should probably re-set expectations that trans-Tasman quarantine free travel is coming any time soon.
“This is Government is proving itself incapable of being risk proportionate in our response to COVID-19.
“Long term damage to our economy is now a certainty. It will take so much longer than necessary for us to recover because this Government can’t get its house in order.”