Todd Muller calls for Level 1 'now', after 33 days of no community transmission

New Zealand should be at Alert Level 1 now, says National Party leader Todd Muller, echoing the call across the floor from Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters. 

Todd Muller, National Party leader Source: Getty

It comes as the country has had 33 days with no community transmission of Covid-19, no new cases in 12 days and only one active case. 

A leaked Cabinet paper released by National has official advice stating Level 1 should be based on "having eliminated chains of transmissions and there having been no new cases from community transmission for at least 28 days". 

"If that has been achieved, and we have confidence in our border controls, there is theoretically no need for restrictions on people's movements, interactions or activities," it says. 

"It should happen today," Mr Muller said, after Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern outlined the rules that would be in place under Level 1

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The PM has outlined what life will look like when we move into Level 1. Source: 1 NEWS

Yesterday, Ms Ardern brought forward the full review of New Zealand's alert levels to June 8, meaning it is now possible that New Zealand could move to Alert Level 1 next week.

"She’s got the information at her fingertips. We should be at Level 1 now," Mr Muller said. "Businesses are haemorrhaging. They need certainty today, not having to wait until next week.

"If you can fill Eden Park from next Wednesday, you can start business today. It’s time for a captain’s call to open New Zealand up, to go to Level 1. We’ve had enough of the vice captain’s calls."

Mr Peters today said he had "always believed we’re ready now" to move to Alert Level 1. 

"We’ve gone past two cycles of 14 days. We’re now 33 days away from the last community transmission. We brought 130 people into the country during the lockdown 3 and 4.

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After 12 straight days of no new Covid-19 cases, signs are looking good for moving from Level 2 next week. Source: 1 NEWS

"We'll have the Cabinet meeting on Monday, whereupon I expect things to happen more quickly than predicted by my friends in the media." 

When asked to explain, Mr Peters said they were "running a certain chronological narrative and I just said it's going to be different".

Ms Ardern was asked in the House about the Cabinet advice and when the country should move to Level 1. 

She said the period where New Zealand had not had cases, as well as the time from when the country last had community transmission, was not the only criteria to move to Level 1. 

"The Director-General [of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield] has to be confident in the data. We know there is asymptomatic transmission, we know there is a long tail," Ms Ardern said. 

"I would rather move once, do it right, and not continue to risk our economy."

Mr Muller asked why she needed to wait until midnight June 10 to move the country to Level 1. 

Ms Ardern replied that Mr Muller "does a disservice when he explains that the decision-making process is as simplistic as he describes - it is not".

"We factor in a range of issues, including economic impact, including compliance, including transmission, and our unknowns. And I stand by every decision we have made to date."

National MP Gerry Brownlee then called out, "Well done, Captain!"

He was told off by Speaker Trevor Mallard and told to describe people correctly in the House.