Sir John Key says he is “delighted” to hear the Government announce a “vaxathon” as part of the Super Saturday vaccination drive, an idea he raised in August.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today announced the “blast from the past” telethon-style event would take place between 12-8pm on various TV channels.
It would include real-time data on how regions are going, prizes, information from experts and competition between towns and regions.
Key raised the idea in an interview with Mike Hosking in August, saying the Government should adopt a telethon-style approach to boost vaccination numbers and open up our borders by Christmas.
The vaxathon is a great idea. It will bring the community together, and be a lot of fun. Good to see the Government take up John Key’s idea. But actually he wasn’t even the first to propose it. On 29 July, Chris Bishop wrote:
Setting a target in and of itself will make a difference. Kiwis are good at getting behind national campaigns and striving collectively to reach a goal: think telethons, America’s Cup red socks, even buying a beach. Let’s put the “team of five million” to work and get in behind a national effort to reach a goal.
So good to see Labour adopt National’s ideas a couple of months down the track. Hopefully they will listen to Key on this part also:
Key said, however, along with these initiatives there needed to be targets for people to get behind, including a minimum vaccination level and a date from which the New Zealand borders would start to open up.
He said he would suggest December 1 and a rate of at least 90 per cent fully-vaccinated.
“The question is what happens if a region or the country never gets to 90 per cent?
“That is why you have to get people a clear date, but if you reach a target like 90 per cent before that date then you would do it then.
“If you don’t put a date on it, then people don’t know what’s the urgency.”
I agree we should have both a target and a date.