COVID returns to New Zealand after over 100 days

New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern

New Delhi (NVI): New Zealand, which declared itself free of coronavirus over 100 days back, has reported the return of the deadly pandemic.

The detection of four cases in a single-family was announced by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, who had earned global praise for the country’s success in containing the virus.

In a televised address to the nation, the Prime Minister said the cases had been detected in the country’s largest city Auckland from an unknown source, outside of managed isolation or quarantine facilities.

“After 102 days, we have our first cases of COVID-19 outside of managed isolation or quarantine facilities… we have all worked incredibly hard to prevent this scenario,” she said.

Accordingly, she issued a stay-at-home lockdown order for Auckland.

Auckland will be put on Alert Level 3 and will be locked down for at least three days from Wednesday and some social distancing restrictions will be reintroduced in the rest of the country.

The rest of the country would move to Alert Level 2 on Wednesday, with social distancing rules in place and mass gatherings limited to 100 people, according to media reports.