New Zealand Announces Nationwide Lockdown Over Only One Covid Case

New Zealand moved into a snap three-day lockdown on Tuesday after one COVID-19 reported.

New Zealand moved into a snap three-day lockdown on Tuesday after one COVID-19 reported. It is a single case of locally spread Covid-19 which is suspected to be the Delta variant, said Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

Ardern said New Zealand over the past six months have not recorded any infections in the community, so it could not take any chances with the “game changer” Delta strain.

In a televised national address Ardern said, “We have seen what can happen elsewhere if we fail to get on top of it. We only get one chance.”

The New Zealand leader referred, Australia’s struggles to hold the highly transmissible Delta variant for her “short, sharp” reaction to the case, which was reported in a 58-year-old Auckland man.

“We are better to start high and be cautious, then move out as soon as we are comfortable doing so, than to start low and be in that phase (lockdown) for much, much longer,” she said.

“You only need to look at Australia to see the alternative. In New Zealand, ‘go hard, go early’ has served us well.”

For three days from Tuesday night New Zealand is announced to go for a complete lockdown which is the initial plan, with Auckland and the nearby Coromandel area facing the restrictions for a week.

According to the officials, the Auckland case has no noticeable connection to the border or managed isolation which is a major factor behind the strong response is the fact.

Recording just 26 deaths in a population of five million, New Zealand has won widespread praise for its Covid-19 response. It has meant that there were no national stay-at-home orders for more than a year and domestic life remained close to normal, with no restrictions on social gatherings and limited use of mask.

However, the country’s vaccine rollout has been less as compared to other countries, with only around 20 percent of the population have been full vaccinated so far.

Ardern said New Zealand was one of the last places in the world to record Delta in the community but it had to be assumed the strain was now present, even though laboratory tests would not offer confirmation until Wednesday.

“Every case we’ve had at MIQ (border quarantine) recently has been the Delta variant and Delta is surging around the world,” she said.

“We need to assume this will be too and this has shaped all the decisions we have made.”

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