Latest News

Winston Peters says heads should roll over staff Covid-19 testing failures

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters says head should roll over the failure to test managed isolation and quarantine staff, this after it was revealed workers at the border and in isolation and quarantine hotels were not regularly tested.

Mr Peters said something had gone wrong at the Ministry of Health:

“When you have given an assurance to ministers and to the public that this is going on, when you find out that those things are not going on, then you've got to ask: ‘what on earth is happening?’” he said.

When asked if he thought “heads should roll” Mr Peters said they should.

“When you find out that something that was promised to be done has not been done, then it’s got to be, like business like every other profession I know, a thing called accountability.”

“The reality is when I find that 40 per cent of a certain institution that needed to be checked and monitored and tested have not been, I get plain alarmed."

Asked if the person who should resign should be Bloomfield himself, Mr Peters said Bloomfield was not his responsibility.

“Ashley Bloomfield is not answerable to me he is answerable to the Minister of Health.”

“You have a circumstance where a direction has been given and it was not followed. Now you cannot just say that the person who gave the direction should resign,” Mr Peters said.

“What you have to do is find out whether the direction is followed, and if it wasn’t followed - why. And if it is inadequate in terms of an answer, then that person should go.

“It’s the nature of politics that the buck stops at the top. Frequently people are accountable but they are not responsible.”

When asked if Bloomfield was the person responsible for the minister’s order not being carried out, the NZ First leader said that was a question for Bloomfield, not him.

  Back to News