Last week, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced that she’d no longer be holding COVID pressers after Sunday. Now it’s Monday and guess what – Gladys is back.
Berejiklian had said that she’d only front the media at 11am when there was some big news related to lockdown, the vaccine rollout, or COVID. Her excuse for today’s presser? “Milestones.”
The Premier made no mention of the fact that NSW Labor leader Chris Minns was holding his own 11am presser to talk about the case numbers, and that her own press conference was perhaps a last-minute backflip to avoid embarrassment.
“No, I was always scheduled to do today because of the key milestones we announced,” Berejiklian said just after 11am on Monday morning.
“Obviously today is the first day many people have freedoms they didn’t have before and I want to stress that nothing has changed from my comments from last week.”
Gladys is only doing a presser because of Chris Minns, you can't change my mind
— Jonathan Greenwood (@JonathanGwood) September 13, 2021
Gladys on press conferences.
FRIDAY: "Sunday will be the last day we officially do a press conference in this way,"
TODAY: “No I was always scheduled to do today because of the key milestones we announced.”
— Matt Burke (@matttburke) September 13, 2021
Gladys entering her Farnham Era
— James Colley (@JamColley) September 13, 2021
So what milestone(s) did Berejiklian roll out in order to justify the press conference she didn’t want to have? The milestone was that kids above 12 can now get vaxxed (which we already knew was coming) while the freedom is that most people can now have small picnics (something we also knew was coming).
“We opened our doors to children aged 12 years and over at our hub and I can tell you it was a delightful thing to see those children in our queue at the hub this morning,” Dr Danielle Austin from St Vincent’s Hospital said.
Like, great. This is excellent news, but we already knew children in this age group had been made eligible to receive the the Pfizer vaccine late last month.
It feels more like Berejiklian plucked a minor update out of thin air so as not to let the Opposition Leader get all the limelight with his own 11am presser.
Surprisingly, no journalists pressed Berejiklian about upcoming Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) hearings.
Quite a few people have speculated that Berejiklian’s decision to axe the daily pressers was a ploy to avoid scrutiny over the anti-corruption hearings, so it would’ve been nice to have heard her react to this, or even just to find out whether or not she’s been summoned to give evidence before the anti-corruption watchdog.
Political chaos aside, though, stay home if you can and get vaccinated.
All adult Aussies (yep, even those of us under 40) are currently able to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Click here to see which clinics are offering it, and talk to a doctor for more info.
The best vaccine is the first one you can get, and that’ll be our ticket out of this mess.