New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has tested positive for COVID-19 with moderate symptoms, her office said in a statement on Saturday.
She will not be in parliament for the government’s emissions reduction plan on Monday and the budget on Thursday, but “travel arrangements for her trade mission to the United States will not be affected at this stage,” the statement said.
Ardern had been symptomatic since Friday night, returning a faint positive in the evening and a clear positive Saturday morning on a rapid antigen test, the paper said.
She has been in isolation since Sunday, when her partner Clarke Gayford tested positive, she said.
Due to the positive test, Ardern is expected to self-isolate until the morning of May 21, performing whatever tasks he can remotely.
Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson will address the media in his stead on Monday.
“This is a landmark week for the government and I am devastated that I cannot be there for it,” Ardern said in the statement.
“Our emissions reduction plan sets the path to achieving our zero carbon target and the budget addresses the long-term future and security of New Zealand’s healthcare system,” she said. “But as I said earlier in the week, isolating yourself with COVID-19 is a very kiwi experience this year and my family is no different.”
Ardern also said Saturday that his daughter Neve had tested positive on Wednesday.
“Despite best efforts, I unfortunately joined the rest of my family and tested positive for COVID 19,” Ardern posted on his official Instagram page.