“Four weeks since Chris Hipkins last fronted on the COVID-19 response, he couldn’t tell New Zealanders anything new about how the Government will confront the imminent landfall of Omicron,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“There are two possible explanations for why he can’t say anything now but will reveal all tomorrow. Either the Government is exhausted and has given up fighting COVID, or it is busy fighting itself.

“Hipkins’ press conference was filled with suggestions of opening up, cut short by the need to wait for Cabinet. When asked what the plan was, Hipkins said he’d ‘have a little bit to say about that tomorrow,’ among other vagaries.

“The Government needs to start governing in the public interest, giving New Zealanders clarity about how it will deal with an imminent crisis. People need to understand what the Government’s intentions are. They need to know things such as:

  • Whether schools will stay open
  • Who will have to isolate for how long if infected
  • Whether the border will remain closed if Omicron is raging within the border anyway
  • How it will supplement insufficient hospital capacity

“New Zealanders who pay for Government have the right to know what its plans are for their basic freedoms and their immediate futures. If the Government can’t unite itself behind a plan, what hope do we have?”