National leader, Simon Bridges says New Zealand needs to leave Covid-19 Alert Level 3 now with BusinessNZ agreeing it’s time to breathe life back into the economy.
The leader of the opposition says the country is desperate to get the economy moving.
“I think it's gone on too long, let's get New Zealand working again,” he told 1 NEWS.
And he’s got 6,000 reasons why, one for every new person who signed up for a benefit last week.
“Like the man who's told me he's now feeding his family porridge and cereal for dinner, we can do better than that and the big answer is to end the lockdown,” Mr Bridges says.
The public have mixed views but CEO of BusinessNZ, Kirk Hope says it’s time to prioritise business.
“I think we need to move to Alert Level 2 as quickly as we can,” he says.
“The health outcomes have been successful, now we need to move the focus from saving lives to saving livelihoods.”
But epidemiologist, Michael Baker says the opposite.
“I think we need more time at level three, which is quite a bit like Level 4, in that it's making it very clear that you stay at home.”
A call to exit Level 3 is now a big gamble for Simon Bridges - similar comments in Level 4 sparked public outrage. Even his own MPs questioned his judgement which in turn led to speculation over his leadership.
But he’s not sorry about any of it and wasn’t quick to judge those flouting the rules.
“They're starting to resist and change, look I'm not saying they should, but I think that's what you have when things go on too long,” he says.
The Government is expected to make a call in a week’s time, Kiwi’s expecting an answer on May 11.