The government has implemented extreme measures to minimise the threat of the COVID-19 virus, but if you think that’s going to stop Prime Minister Scott Morrison from going to the NRL this weekend, you are sorely mistaken.
In a press conference on Friday afternoon, the government announced a plan to “advise against” any non-essential events with over 500 people in an attempt to minimise the coronavirus outbreak in Australia. While schools, universities and public transport is exempt from the new rules, live music, festivals and sporting events will likely be impacted by the advice.
Despite the ban, which looks to be coming into effect on Monday, Scott Morrison asserted that he will still be attending this weekend’s NRL game to support his “beloved sharks.”
“I do still plan to go to the football on Saturday. This is an arrangement we are putting in place for next week as a precaution. This is an early-stage action that we are undertaking to make sure we get ahead of this. I would be going on on Saturday because I had previously planned to, and these are measures we are putting on from next week, and there are further measures that will come in over time, I would expect.”
If you’re unfamiliar with NRL, the Cronulla Sharks (ScoMo’s pride and joy) are kicking off their season against opposition leader Anthony Albanese’s bebes the South Sydney Rabbitohs in Sydney on Saturday. Both the Prime Minister and the leader of the opposition are attending the game.
Naturally, this response was deemed irresponsible my members of the audience, but Scott Morrison further clarified his stance on the issue.
“I think you misunderstand the point of what we’re doing on Monday. These are stepped responses. We are not of great concern right now in terms of where those gatherings might be today, but in the weeks ahead, this will change. This is a matter of scaling our response.”
Although he’s done an absolutely abysmal job at leading the country through the bushfire crisis, floods and coronavirus pandemic we’ve seen in recent months, we should commend the leader of our nation on his passion for his “beloved Sharks.”
‘”The fact that I would still be going on Saturday speaks not just to my passion for my beloved Sharks, it might be the last game I get to go to for a long time. That’s fine. In the future I suspect we might be watching them on television, and that’s OK as well.”
Throughout the press conference, Scott Morrison asserted that although the government runs many things, they don’t run the NRL and AFL, and therefore the government will “leave them to manage the issues.” It’s unclear if this means they’ll be exempt from whatever advice or legislation comes into effect on Monday, but Scott Morrison said he will “leave those decisions to [Todd Greenburg and other NRL/AFL officials] how they put them in place.”
We’ll be sure to update you
Getty Images / Matt King