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One Of Two Additional Rotorua MIQ Hotels, Quarantine Facility

Press Release – The Maori Party

MP for Waiariki, Rawiri Waititi, today revealed that the Government is looking to add two additional MIQ facilities in Rotorua. With one, functioning as a quarantine facility for infectious cases of Covid-19.

“Sources have indicated that two additional MIQ facilities in Rotorua are being looked at, with one potentially going online as a quarantine facility. This changes the prospects completely for the people of Te Arawa and Rotorua,” said Waititi.

“What our people need to understand, is the difference between isolation and quarantine. Currently, there are 3 isolation facilities in Rotorua. Any person who tests positive in these hotels are shuttled to an Auckland quarantine facility, where they are kept – whilst infectious.”

“Except, the addition of a quarantine facility in Rotorua keeps and brings those infectious, to our community. This only increases the potential for a MIQ breach leading to a community outbreak. It adds more pressure on the local health system and ultimately means more lockdowns. This would be disastrous for Rotorua, and especially Māori who make up 45% of the Rotorua population.”

“With predispositions to poorer health outcome a worry, so too are poor Māori vaccination rates provided by Lakes DHB.”

“Lakes DHB has the poorest delivery in equitable vaccination rates for Māori in Aotearoa. For every 5 non-Māori vaccinated among the 20-34 group, only 2-Māori are being vaccinated. This rate is atrocious but only further justifies why additional MIQ-facilities cannot be welcomed in Rotorua.”

“As well as the effect additional MIQ will have on the economic recovery of tourism, Te Arawa iwi have also been left out of the conversation. Ngāti Whakaue and Tūhourangi-Ngāti Wāhiao have both written strong letters in opposition of additional MIQ facilities, and I back them completely.”

“This is not about stopping MIQ and we understand the urgency at which whānau overseas want and need to return to Aotearoa. But the Government need to look at investing in the infrastructure to support this effort. If it means building purpose-built facilities or upgrades to Queenstown’s hospital – so be it.”

“We look to complete the gathering of signatures on Te Paati Māori’s ‘No-more-MIQ’ petition on Friday, before presenting it to the house. With 2,000-signatures we are needing more support to protect Rotorua.”

“With the tens-of-thousands online in yesterday’s newly launched MIQ lobby, a decision is only imminent. Whilst Rotorua is built upon the manaaki of their people, there is no manaaki without the life of their people – and that is the unfortunate ultimatum.”

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