Oceanian

Politics • Oceanian
2020-07-02T17:00:01+00:00
Resignation of NZ's Health Minister David Clark
Resignation of NZ's Health Minister David Clark
(Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

New Zealand Health Minister David Clark has resigned, saying it has become “increasingly clear to me that my continuation in the role is distracting from the government’s overall response to Covid-19.” Clark had been previously seen breaching lockdown measures.

“David has come to the conclusion his presence in the role is creating an unhelpful distraction from the Government’s ongoing response to Covid-19 and wider health reforms,” Jacinda Ardern responded to his resignation. “It’s essential our health leadership has the confidence of the New Zealand public. As David has said to me the needs of the team must come before him as an individual.”

Politics • Oceanian
2020-06-16T13:46:01+00:00
New Zealand reports two new Covid-19 cases after being 24 days without new case
Visualisation of the Covid-19 virus
Visualisation of the Covid-19 virus Credit: Fusion Medical Animation

The ministry of health has released a statement that two new Covid-19 cases have been imported from the United Kingdom. Dr Siouxsie Wiles from the University of Auckland who specializes in infectious diseases has stated that "That's why we all still need to be really conscious that if you have a sniffle or anything that we still go and get tested, just in case there has been some transmission from someone who's come into the country". The transmission follows after New Zealand had been 28 days without a new community transmission and 24 days since a new recorded case.

Politics • Oceanian
2020-06-13T11:20:02+00:00
Black Lives Matter protests held in cities across Australia
Black Lives Matter protests held in cities across Australia
Credit: Twitter Miss_vee_bee (Reproduction) (Creative Commons Attribution 1.0)

Thousands of people have taken part in Black Lives Matter protests across Australia. Health officials and leaders in Australia have warned that mass gatherings in support of racial equality risk inadvertently re-sparking the virus. A protester who attended a Black Lives Matter rally in Melbourne last weekend tested positive for the coronavirus, according to state authorities.

A separate series of protests were held in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne against the treatment of refugees being held in detention centres. The Sydney event -- organized by the Refugee Action Coalition -- took place despite a court ban.

Politics • Oceanian
2020-06-08T10:30:02+00:00
New Zealand is Covid-19-Free, moving to Alert Level 1
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern  at the InterContinental New York Barclay in New York City, September 23, 2019
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern at the InterContinental New York Barclay in New York City, September 23, 2019 Credit: The White House from Washington, DC / Public domain

New Zealand reports its last active Covid-19 case has recovered, marking the country's 17th day in a row without infections. In Monday's cabinet meeting, the move to Alert Level 1 was discussed and later announced publicly by PM Jacinda Ardern. She urges to stay vigilant and that "with over 100,000 new cases being reported each day, the challenge of COVID remains around the globe and so it remains here."

Politics • Oceanian
2020-06-07T10:46:01+00:00
PM Scott Morrison calls for reopening interstate borders by July

Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison is urging Western Australia and Queensland to allow travellers to cross interstate borders by July as he's “very keen to see Australia’s economy continue to reopen on the timetable for interstate travel”. Australia has seen a decline in Covid-19 cases but premiers of Queensland, South and Western Australia are not yet willing to reopen their borders for interstate travel. Morrison warns of the economic impact, especially on the tourism industry. “If I get planes flying between Australia and New Zealand, I want them flying between New South Wales and Queensland and Western Australia and South Australia”, said Morrison.

Politics • Oceanian
2020-06-05T17:00:02+00:00
Zero Covid-19 Cases in New Zealand for 14 Consecutive Days
Mount Victoria, New Zealand
Mount Victoria, New Zealand Credit: unsplash.com/Kirsten Drew

There have been no new reported cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand for two weeks in a row, with the last known infected person leaving quarantine on 15 June. Scientists are optimistic to declare the elimination of the virus by next week, if no new cases occur.

Politics • Oceanian
2020-06-01T06:56:28+00:00
George Floyd Solidarity Marches across New Zealand
George Floyd Solidarity Marches across New Zealand
Credit: unsplash.com/Logan Weaver

Thousands of people across New Zealand have joined Americans to protest the killing of George Floyd. In Auckland and Christchurch, protestors have gathered for the Black Lives Matter March for Solidarity while a vigil is being held in Wellington. Among the organisers is 20-year old student Joanna Li, who told the NZ Herald: "It's needed, if you think it's not needed, you're not paying attention."

Politics • Oceanian
2020-05-28T15:48:37+00:00
Found: Missing New Zealand walkers rescued after 19 days
Kahurangi National Park on the South Island of New Zealand
Kahurangi National Park on the South Island of New Zealand Credit: W. Bulach / CC BY-SA (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Jessica O-Connor and Dion Reynolds were found in the New Zealand wilderness after 19 days. The two 23-year-olds got lost in Kahurangi National Park and sustained injuries in a fall. They found a water source and were able to make a fire, which was then seen by a search helicopter.

Politics • Oceanian
2020-05-27T15:34:43+00:00
New Zealand reports zero Covid-19 hospitalisations
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern Credit: gg.govt.nz

New Zealand's newest Covid-19 update reports zero Covid-19 hospitalisations and no new positive cases in the past five days. Dr Ashley Bloomfield, Director-General of Health, reported the release of the last hospitalised patient today. The number of people infected with the novel Coronavirus is down to 21.

Politics • Oceanian
2020-05-19T17:03:03+00:00
Poll reveals: Jacinda Ardern most popular PM in a century

A public poll conducted between May 8 and May 16 by Newshub-Reid Research shows the Labour Party, led by Jacinda Ardern, climbing 14 points to 56.5%. Arden's popularity rose to 59.5%, with 92% respondents stating the party's Covid-19 response was "the right call". Arden said it was a “privileged opportunity to be leading at this time”.

Politics • Oceanian
2020-05-16T07:45:30+00:00
Controversial New Zealand Level 2 Enforcement Law Under Review

As New Zealand sees easing of movement restrictions, a controversial law that allows police to enter homes without a search warrant to enforce restriction rules is being heavily criticised. Parliament has voted to send the law to a selected committee for a post-enactment review. Both Act and The National Party called the bill "an overreach of powers".

Politics • Oceanian
2020-05-16T05:12:03+00:00
New Zealand starts Alert Level 2 Restrictions

New Zealand has eased its alert restrictions from level 3 to level 2, entering a phase of loosening movement restrictions. Shops, restaurants, malls, gyms, museums, movie theatres and other public spaces reopend on Thursday under strict physical distancing and hygiene measures on May 13. Schools will follow on May 18.

Politics • Oceanian
2020-04-27T16:57:47+00:00
New Zealand says it has stopped community transmission of Covid-19
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern Credit: gg.govt.nz

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the virus was "currently" eliminated., but officials have warned against complacency, saying it does not mean a total end to new coronavirus cases.

With only one case reported last Sunday, and new cases in single figures for several days, New Zealand is moving out of its toughest level of social restrictions.

Politics • Oceanian
2020-04-10T04:36:02+00:00
New Zealand Prime Minister says that Tooth Fairy and Easter Bunny are essential workers

Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern has announced at a press conference that the government does "consider both the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny to be essential workers", but added that "it's a bit difficult at the moment for the bunny to perhaps get everywhere" and suggest people put easter eggs in their front windows to create their own Easter hunt for children in their respective neighborhoods.

Politics • Oceanian
2020-04-07T09:20:41+00:00
New Zealand health minister got demoted after breaking lockdown rules

The health minister of New Zealand David Clark has broken the lockdown rules by driving 20km to a beach with his family to go for a walk. The minister has offered his resignation, but the prime minister Jacinda Ardern has stated that her priority "is our collective fight against Covid-19. We cannot afford massive disruption in the health sector or to our response. For that reason, and that reason alone, Dr. Clark will maintain his role". As an immediate reaction the health minister was stripped of his position as associate finance minister and demoted to the bottom of the cabinet rankings.