The NT Government has advised Territorians to be vigilant as Covid-19 cases driven by the BA4 and BA5 Omicron variants spiked with 353 cases recorded overnight, placing active cases at 1,977 of which 19 are in hospital. No patients, however, are in the ICU.
The NT’s two-year public health emergency declaration will lift from midnight tonight, meaning Territorians will be able to work without having a COVID-19 vaccination for the first time since last year.
UPDATED: The Territory’s vaccine mandate for some workers will be lifted next week, when the government’s latest public health emergency officially ends, Chief Minister Natasha Fyles has announced, but it remains unclear what particular positions will be affected.
Legal action against vaccine mandate dead after Fyles Government ‘covers their backsides’ with legislation: UNTB
The Fyles Government’s last-minute push to retrospectively “validate” the Chief Health Officer’s vaccine mandate in Parliament last month has killed a highly-publicised lawsuit against the NT Government, the backers of the legal action have said.
The NT Government has rushed extraordinary amendments through Parliament Thursday night to retrospectively “validate” the Chief Health Officer’s vaccine mandate directions, raising suspicions the government had not properly enacted the orders the first time, which one legal expert said has “demolished the rule of law in the NT” and would most likely draw the attention of the Federal Government.
Territorians will no longer have to show proof of vaccination in order to attend licenced venues across the NT in a surprise announcement by the Gunner Government.
Booster status proof demanded of public servants on same day SA announces return of some unvaxxed workers
NT public servants had until Wednesday to prove they had received their third COVID-19 vaccination, would get it, or had an exemption, despite the chief health officer’s direction allowing until April 22 for boosters, and came on the same day as South Australia announced unvaccinated teachers, public transport workers and taxi drivers could return to work.
The chief health officer has revoked the vaccine passport requirement for people going to sporting events as long as people are not drinking, which allows un-vaccinted people to go the Parramatta Eels versus North Queensland Cowboys game next month.
The head of Hospitality NT has called on the Gunner Government to stop making hospitality staff the frontline ‘COVID-19 cops’, as the chief health officer continues to require checking of vaccine status certificates to get into pubs, bars, and cafes.
Chief Minister Michael Gunner has said the Territory could be in a COVID-19 “emergency” for a further four years in a confusing explanation for the need for his government’s controversial legislation giving the chief health officer special powers for two years after the end of the health emergency declaration.
The Gunner Government will continue the unelected chief health officer’s extraordinary powers for the next two years without having to prove there is a public health emergency, as part of new legislation introduced in Parliament on Wednesday.
Wastewater samples for COVID-19 testing in the NT will no longer be sent to South Australia for analysis, after a team of microbiologists at Charles Darwin University recently started carrying out the tests in Darwin.