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Outrage over photo as lockdown restrictions are eased

Outrage over photo as lockdown restrictions are eased

A photo of a “disgusting” mess around a bin in a New Zealand park has caused outrage after the government eased lockdown restrictions for COVID-19.

Merania Mihaka, a resident of Rotorua on the north island, claims that it only took hours for people to create a mess.

"For 5 weeks Papatuanuku was able to heal herself, it takes less than 24 hrs for humans to ruin her again," she wrote, alongside photos of rubbish from fast food restaurants left discarded around public bins, on Facebook.

Papatuanuka is a Māori term meaning the land or a Mother Earth figure in Māori mythology.

Others were angered by the sight.

“Obviously these people don't appreciate what they have,” one woman wrote.

One man added: “humans are the worst”.

“Disgusting alright,” another woman wrote. 

“How disappointing to see some people just never learn.”

The photo was posted just a day after New Zealand moved out of its toughest level of coronavirus restrictions on Tuesday, allowing some non-essential businesses to reopen.

"There is no one point in time that this mission ends. We are in the next phase of the battle and we are not done,” New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern explained.

“It’s an ongoing battle.”

The level three restrictions, which limit people to local travel and keep malls, pubs, hairdresser and other businesses closed, will last for at least another two weeks.

"No one wants a second wave in New Zealand and we must guard against that," Ms Ardern said.

"Elimination does not mean zero cases," she said.

"It would be an ongoing campaign and zero tolerance for cases."