Kiwis have 'every right' to be angry after multiple COVID-19 'breaches' - Duncan Garner

Kiwis following the rules have every right to be angry by the latest COVID-19 "breaches", according to The AM Show's Duncan Garner.

On Tuesday, it was revealed New Zealand has two active COVID-19 infections after more than three weeks of no new cases. The two infected women travelled from Britain, via Doha and Brisbane, and arrived in Auckland on June 7. They were then taken to the Novotel in Auckland's Ellerslie, which is serving as a managed isolation facility. 

On June 13, the women drove to Wellington in a private vehicle after being granted an exemption on compassionate grounds due to the sudden death of a family member. On Monday, they tested positive for the illness. 

Although it was initially said the women had no contact with anyone during their trip, it's since emerged they did. They had "limited physical contact" for five minutes with friends who helped them after they got lost on Auckland's motorways. 

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister David Clark have both expressed disappointment the women weren't tested before leaving. It's also unclear what questions they were asked about symptoms before they left. One of the women had symptoms she put down to a pre-existing condition.

As new details of that case emerged on Wednesday evening, other incidents have come to the fore. Newshub reported a group of 10 people were let of Christchurch for a burial on Tuesday despite such exemptions no longer being allowed, two people didn't initially return to managed isolation after a funeral in Hamilton last week, and TVNZ says a birthday party was held with guests who shouldn't have been mingling. 

Garner shared his view on the situation on the AM Show on Thursday morning.

"Good god. These eleventh-hour clusters of COVID breaches are enough to make any of us law-abiding, lockdown lifers wonder what is next," he said.

"If you are angry because you followed every rule. Maybe you lost your job, lost your business, then you have every right to stand up and hurl obscenities at those in charge, who look more than incompetent.

"You have every right to be angry with the 'she'll be right' attitude of those in charge of testing in quarantine. Hopeless. They were as loose a goose."

He goes on to list the incidents reported on Wednesday.

Speaking to The AM Show on Thursday about the circumstances of the two COVID-19 cases' release from managed isolation, Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield took responsibility for gaps in implementation of the rules. People in the facilities are meant to be tested on day three and 12 of their stays and should return a negative test before leaving. 

"There was more a gap of making sure the protocols and procedures were really clear for all staff. There are 15 facilities across Auckland. I thought it was all clear. I found out it wasn't," he said. 

"I've apologised to the Prime Minister and the Minister of Health... We have got really high expectations and New Zealanders have those of us. We didn't meet them on this occasion and I am sorry for that. I am taking responsibility for making sure it is sorted out," he said. 

Assistant Chief of Defence Air Commodore Digby Webb has been asked to oversee the quarantine and managed isolation facilities, including processes around exits.