(Natural News) Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced Wednesday, March 23, that New Zealand is lifting most of its Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions – including vaccine mandates. The announcement comes as a surprise because the country is having its highest rates of infection since the start of the pandemic.
During the announcement, Ardern said that she was describing the “next set of changes” to COVID settings in New Zealand. Those changes include eliminating all limitations on attendance at outdoor gatherings and increasing the limits on indoor gatherings under New Zealand’s strictest regimen from 100 to 200.
Additionally, vaccine mandates for public and private employees will be repealed, except those in healthcare, elder care, corrections and border enforcement. New Zealand will also be doing away with vaccine passes.
Citizens no longer need to be vaccinated to visit public places like restaurants, bars and retail stores from April 4. New Zealand will also be lifting a requirement to scan QR barcodes at those venues.
Ardern claimed that the restrictions she enforced in March 2020, when the country only had five COVID-19 cases, were “successful” in stemming the tide of infections.
She added that the restrictions had been very hard for New Zealanders. Under the pandemic restrictions in New Zealand, Kiwis were forced to go on lockdown, take experimental vaccines, present vaccine passports to enter businesses and other public places and endure economic devastation.
International tourism previously accounted for around 20 percent of New Zealand’s foreign income and over five percent of GDP, but the figures changed when the country enforced some of the strictest border controls during the pandemic.
New Zealand is now seeing see some of its highest rates of coronavirus infections and hospitalizations since the pandemic began, with an average of 17,000 new infections reported daily. (Related: Belgium drops most of its COVID restrictions, following European trend.)
Ardern also claimed that the country’s high vaccination rate of 95 percent was key to her decision to lift the restrictions because it indicates that New Zealand now has “a high level of collective immunity.”
Ardern’s decisions influenced by political reality
While citizens are most likely relieved to hear the updates from Ardern, her pattern of relaxing restrictions at times of increasing infections suggests that her decisions are influenced more by political reality than by science.
In October last year, as the delta variant caused a spike in cases during a seven-week lockdown, Ardern slightly eased up on COVID-19 mandates, because “the return to zero [infections] is incredibly difficult.”
But now, Ardern has revealed the impetus behind her recent decision to give New Zealanders back some of their freedom. She also acknowledged that while people have been safer, “everyone is also tired.”
It seems like Ardern has finally realized that citizens are getting sick of the oppressive mandates, as proven by a recent anti-vaccine mandate protest outside Parliament. Yet, Ardern insists that the protest had nothing to do with her decision, claiming that the changes have been announced “because it’s safe to do so, not because anyone arrived on the front lawn of Parliament.”
Ardern is a member of the Labor Party in New Zealand. The party is similar to Democrats in the U.S. and both are trying to pacify voters who are fed up with draconian mandates and far-left allies who want leaders to enforce even stricter rules.
New Zealand’s Green Party, which still believes that very young children are still at high risk of COVID-19 infection, blasted Ardern’s announcement as “far too premature.” The left-wing party also called for school-based vaccination programs, high equity in vaccine coverage, and free N95 masks.
Teanau Tuiono, a Green Party Member of Parliament, said that the government should be trying to stay ahead of the virus and enforcing measures to avoid a second peak in COVID-19 cases.
But there isn’t really much the government can do to stop a virus. It seems like the best course of action is to allow the disease to run its course until herd immunity is reached.
Watch the video below as thousands of New Zealanders rally for freedom.
This video is from the Spirit2all channel on Brighteon.com.
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