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‘This is not a game’: Tensions rise over easing Victoria’s lockdown

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

A tweet from Health Minister Greg Hunt has sparked a pushback as thousands brace for tomorrow’s announcement over which restrictions will be lifted.

Tensions over easing Victoria's lockdown restrictions have risen again as thousands brace for tomorrow's announcement over which measures will be lifted.

Premier Daniel Andrews and Chief Health Officer Professor Brett Sutton responded to a tweet from federal Health Minister Greg Hunt saying Victoria should ease restrictions in line with NSW.

"The epidemiological conditions for a COVID Safe reopening of hospitality, movement & family reunions among others, have now been firmly met. Vic should now be able to move to the next step in line with NSW," Mr Hunt tweeted this morning.

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Mr Andrews refused to budge on his stance over lockdown, saying the state would ease restrictions slowly and carefully.

"If Minister Hunt is genuinely suggesting that we are keeping this lock down on because somehow we think Victorians are enjoying it or it is a choice that we are making, this is just - it's just wrong," Mr Andrews said.

"No matter what I announce tomorrow, and what that says to me is that we're not going to be pressured, we're not going to be engaging in what I think is a political exercise.

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"This is not a game. The stakes are too high. Everything that has been done, everything that has been given need to count for something and that is why this strategy is not about racing to open up, running to COVID normal, it is about safe and steady steps."

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Mr Andrews said the government would announce "significant" easing of lockdown restrictions tomorrow however it will not include everything that was initially outlined in the state's roadmap to recovery.

Professor Sutton also hit back, saying the government was making decision based on medical and epidemiological evidence.

"We have epidemiologists. I am listening to them," Professor Sutton said.

"Minister Hunt is not an epidemiologist."

"The consequence of not being able to hold it back, if you're lifting too early, has already played out in Victoria."

Victoria has recorded just one new case of COVID-19 today.

Source: 9News

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