Staying in Australia: the acting federal immigration minister Alan Tudge has been speaking in Canberra about the 17 New Zealand travellers who flew into Melbourne via Sydney, which has reignited tensions over borders.
Tudge is referencing reports in the Age that the Victorian department of premier and cabinet gave authorisation for one of the travellers to travel onward to Victoria, but the authorisation was given a week before the premier Daniel Andrews said the state would not be participating in the travel bubble.
Tudge also reiterates comments he made yesterday that the arrivals should not have surprised Victoria because the state’s chief health officer, Brett Sutton, was at a meeting of health ministers where it was discussed.
“So the Victorian government was present when it was discussed, they were made aware that this was going to occur, they raised no objections in the meetings, and furthermore, expressly authorised individuals who were arriving into Sydney from New Zealand to be able to travel on into Victoria,” Tudge said.
“Now, I would ask the premier today to reveal those emails and any other correspondence which shows, clearly, and demonstrably, that they authorised the people to come into Victoria.”
Australia and New Zealand have established a one-way travel bubble: New Zealanders are allowed to travel to the Australian jurisdictions of NSW and the Northern Territory without quarantining. Australians going the other way must still quarantine on arrival in NZ. The wrinkle here has been 17 people who flew into NSW, and then onto Victoria (which is allowed, but Victoria has said it was unaware people were coming into the state from outside the country).