Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews wants ‘no more cases from Sydney’
Daniel Andrews has taken a subtle swipe at NSW over its handling of the current Covid-19 outbreak, saying his government’s “ring of steel” around Melbourne during the second wave last year “protected the whole country”.
It comes as three Sydney removalists travelled through regional NSW and into Victoria, where they delivered furniture to a Craigieburn home and Maribyrnong apartment complex, before heading towards South Australia.
Victorian health authorities said the trio breached their permit conditions as they brought the Delta Covid-19 strain to Victoria, plunging the state into its fifth lockdown – which was extended for another seven days on Tuesday.
Mr Andrews was questioned about what the discussion would be if the outbreak was under control and if the state continued to see more Delta strain incursions; whether lockdown would be the only solution as mass vaccinations were still months away.
The Victorian Premier said it depended on Sydney’s Covid-19 situation and the measures NSW authorities put in place to stop the virus leaking from the city.
“I just remind you all we had a ring of steel around Melbourne last year and it didn’t just protect country Victoria, it protected the whole country,” Mr Andrews said.
“I don’t get joy of having to say to people who want to come home for the best of reasons no, you can’t.
“They’re not locked into Sydney, so they must be locked out of Victoria. That’s the choice I’ve had to make.”
He made the comments off the back of even tighter restrictions to stop any positive infections travelling from Sydney into Victoria.
Red zone arrivals into Victoria from NSW will now need an exemption to enter the state for at least the next two weeks after NSW recorded 78 new cases on Tuesday.
The tougher border measures will come into effect from 11.59pm on Tuesday, with only people with “exceptional circumstances” authorised to enter the state.
“We don’t want to get this outbreak under control, only to see another outbreak flare up because of another incursion,” Mr Andrews said.
When asked if he would like to see NSW authorities put a “ring of steel” around Sydney, Mr Andrews said it was “a matter for them”.
“I don’t want to see more cases from Sydney. Those steps are a matter for them,” the Premier said.
Victoria’s snap lockdown was extended until at least 11.59pm next Tuesday.
The state recorded 13 new local cases on Tuesday – nine of which were already in isolation.
Originally published as Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews wants ‘no more cases from Sydney’
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