The Prime Minister says she made a mistake with her lack of social distancing after she was critiqued for breaking protocols by taking a selfie with members of the public.
Neither Ardern nor any of the supporters in the photo were wearing a mask.
National leader Judith Collins said she was “staggered” to see photos of the Labour leader taken last week.
Ardern apologised for the lack of social distancing at today’s 1pm press conference.
“In that particular photo I made a mistake,” Ardern said.
She said she “worked hard” not to shake hands and keep her distance, in response to criticisms of a group selfie taken in Palmerston North.
“Yes I should have moved further forwards and I should have asked them to step apart as well.
“It is hard,” she said. “I will keep up, as I have, those awkward moments where I refuse to shake hands.”
Collins took aim at Ardern when asked if she thought Auckland should move out of alert level 2.5.
Speaking to reporters this morning, Collins pivoted away from questions about what call Ardern should make today regarding Auckland’s alert levels, instead choosing to draw into question if the Labour leader was properly social distancing.
“I was staggered to see the Prime Minister clearly not socially distancing with no mask just the other day in Palmerston North in a level 2 lockdown,” she said.
Hospitality businesses can't make money at Level 2 because of single server and social distancing rules. Meanwhile, the person responsible for the rules is self-serving and not social distancing. pic.twitter.com/4HUMKJNkU4
— David Seymour (@dbseymour) September 18, 2020