A straight-shooting politician has vowed to bring down ‘arrogant’ Jacinda Ardern in the upcoming New Zealand election.
National Party leader Judith Collins, who was been nicknamed The Crusher, said the prime minister’s lack of policy change leading up to the October 17 polls will ultimately lose her the nation’s top job.
‘One of the things we are seeing is an enormous arrogance from the government, which after only three years in office is displaying all the arrogance of a third term government,’ Ms Collins told The Sydney Morning Herald.
National Party leader Judith Collins (pictured), who was been nicknamed The Crusher, said the prime minister’s lack of policy change leading up to the polls will ultimately lose her the nation’s top job
Ms Collins said ‘arrogant’ New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern (pictured) has put herself in the ‘unenviable position of having to defend every every single COVID cock up’
‘So for instance Jacinda Ardern announced some weeks back that she wouldn’t be bothering to put out policies, or words to that effect anyway, because they were going to make the election all about COVID.’
After New Zealand’s second outbreak of COVID-19, Ms Ardern told voters her government would be focusing on the pandemic rather than a ‘large-scale range of policies’.
Ms Collins said ‘arrogant’ Ms Ardern has put herself in the ‘unenviable position of having to defend every every single COVID cock up’.
The political veteran, who took leadership of the Nationals in July, says Ms Ardern – who has been internationally praised for her handling of the pandemic – can’t take credit for the nation’s low case numbers.
‘We have as a country been saved by the fact that we are so far away from any other country. It’s not that hard to keep isolated a country that already is isolated,’ Ms Collins said.
New Zealanders were meant to go to the polls on September 19, but due to Auckland’s unexpected outbreak, Ms Ardern pushed the election back a month.
‘I want to ensure we have a well run election that gives voters all the information they need … and delivers certainty for the future,’ she said in August.
‘I do need to provide certainty, a sense of fairness and a sense of comfort to voters to ensure them that this will be a safe election.’
The Labour leader first announced September 19 as the date for a general election back in January.
New Zealand, a country of five million people, has recorded just 1406 COVID-19 cases and 22 deaths. It went 102 days without a single case of community transmission.
After New Zealand’s second outbreak of COVID-19, Ms Ardern (pictured) told voters her government would be focusing on the pandemic rather than a ‘large-scale range of policies’
Fifty-four per cent of voters had faith in Ms Ardern to manage the economic recovery, compared to 26 per cent trust for Ms Collins, according to Horizon Research polling.
Ms Ardern’s Labor government moved Auckland from ‘level three’ restrictions to ‘level two’ at midnight on Sunday, which removed barriers on inter-regional travel.
That prompted Air New Zealand to return many regular flights to their travel network, which Aucklanders jumped at, judging by photos on social media of the full-to-the-brim domestic terminal.
For the first time during the pandemic, masks will now be compulsory in New Zealand for public transport.
Ms Ardern has shifted the city out of lockdown despite a tail of cases still being reported there.