Lockdown with Jacinda Ardern: New Zealand PM reveals how she switches off in her downtime – and why she imposed some of the world’s harshest coronavirus restrictions
- Jacinda Ardern has revealed she watches ‘terrible British comedies’ to relax
- The New Zealand Prime Minister, 39, is holed up in Premier House in Wellington
- She said she plays with her daughter Neve and watches TV with parents
Jacinda Ardern has revealed she watches ‘terrible British comedies’ to relax during the coronavirus lock down.
The New Zealand Prime Minister, 39, is holed up in Premier House in Wellington with her partner Clarke Greyford, daughter Neve and her parents who have moved in.
Asked how she relaxes after a busy day managing the crisis, Ms Ardern told a Stuff podcast: ‘Playing with Neve helps a lot so that’s one thing.’
Jacinda Ardern has revealed that she watches ‘terrible British comedies’ in her downtime during the coronavirus lock down
‘At the moment there’s not a lot of time in the evenings but my parents like watching terrible British comedies so from time to time I might dip into something,’ she added without specifying which shows.
‘Just normal things… I use the same escapism as everyone else,’ she said.
New Zealand, almost uniquely, has opted for an eradication strategy to wipe out the virus completely with an extremely strict lock down lasting four weeks.
Ms Ardern revealed she opted for this strategy after speaking to friends abroad.
‘They were saying, “Go, just shut down, because here I am in lockdown with thousands of people dying. Just shut down”,’ she said.
On Thursday Ms Ardern has declared her country’s lockdown a success after a stunning drop in new daily cases to just 29.
‘We are turning a corner, and your commitment means our plan is working,’ she said.
This graph shows the daily number of coronavirus cases recorded each day in New Zealand (in yellow), according to figures from the government health ministry. The red line shows the falling rate of growth in virus cases
The number has declined for the fourth-straight day, giving the best evidence yet that New Zealand has squashed the spread of the deadly disease.
A fortnight ago, the Kiwi government implemented a near society-wide lockdown, with particularly strong restrictions on business, to combat the spread of COVID-19.
On the evidence of the first half of the lockdown, Ms Ardern believes her country is winning the fight.
‘At the halfway mark I have no hesitation in saying, that what New Zealanders have done over the last two weeks is huge,’ she said.
‘In the face of the greatest threat to human health we have seen in over a century, Kiwis have quietly and collectively implemented a nationwide wall of defence.
‘You are breaking the chain of transmission. And you did it for each other.’
Ms Ardern has also announced her government will decide on whether to extend or relax the lockdown which is due to expire at midnight on April 22.
New Zealand could drop the arrangements on April 20.
This graph shows COVID-19 infections in the days since 100 cases were confirmed in (from top to bottom) the USA, Spain, the UK, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore