Radio star Ben Fordham says NSW lockdowns ‘cannot continue’ and lashes out at Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklin

Ben Fordham has lashed out at the New South Wales government’s handling of Sydney’s ongoing lockdown, saying the ‘social and economic impacts dwarf the damage from the virus’.

The 2GB radio host criticized Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklian’s persistent stance that the state will not reopen until the community’s broadcasts are gone.

NSW recorded 78 new Covid-19 cases overnight – but 27 were still in the community while contagious.

‘We see little change in the daily case numbers. They want us to focus on the number of people who are contagious in the community. We’re not really putting a dent on that number,” Fordham said Tuesday morning.

And yet the government thinks that number needs to be close to zero before we can open. Get rid of it. How are we going to get there?

“And when do we start showing some courage? At the moment, the social and economic consequences of the lockdowns dwarf the damage of the virus.”

Ben Fordham has lashed out at the NSW government’s handling of the ongoing Sydney lockdown, saying ‘social and economic impacts dwarf the damage from the virus’

The 2GB radio host criticized Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklian's persistent stance that the state won't reopen until community transfers are gone

The 2GB radio host criticized Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklian’s persistent stance that the state won’t reopen until community transfers are gone

Sydney has been facing the strictest restrictions since the pandemic began in March last year, with even traditional businesses unable to operate.

Fordham says that while the number of cases remains high, hospitalization rates are low and the long-term effects of the lockdown will cause more problems than opening.

“We have the strictest restrictions of any state since the arrival of the coronavirus. Kids don’t go to school, small businesses are on their knees, if you live in Fairfield, Liverpool or Canterbury you can’t leave the area to go to work unless you’re an authorized employee,” Fordham said.

‘And now more than a quarter of a million construction workers and craftsmen are out of work. It has never happened anywhere in Australia. They didn’t even do it in Victoria, during their darkest days… This can’t go on like this.’

During last year’s Phase 4 shutdown in Victoria, which lasted 112 days, traditional businesses were able to operate with sensible Covid-safe practices the entire time.

Tradies cannot work in the Greater Sydney region, nor can they travel to regional New South Wales.

Locked up again, no end in sight, and I’m not for a moment suggesting that the coronavirus isn’t serious… but at what point do we as a society accept that this isn’t going away? Can we really stay locked up until it disappears?’ said Fordham.

The prime minister said a few months ago: ‘We have to learn to live with the virus’. But right now we are destroying the lives of hundreds of thousands of people as we try to chase some that we may never, ever reach.

“Why don’t we get fair dinkum and work towards the prime minister’s goal of learning to live with the virus.”

Sydney is currently in the strictest restrictions since the pandemic began in March last year, with even traditional businesses unable to operate in the current state

Sydney is currently in the strictest restrictions since the pandemic began in March last year, with even traditional businesses unable to operate in the current state

NSW recorded 78 new Covid-19 cases overnight - but 27 were still in the community while contagious

NSW recorded 78 new Covid-19 cases overnight – but 27 were still in the community while contagious

Prime Minister Berejiklian released the new figures on Tuesday when she warned residents of local government areas of Liverpool, Canterbury-Bankstown and Fairfield that they could be carrying the virus even if they have no symptoms.

She said more than two-thirds of the state’s new cases were still found in those three regions.

Officials also confirmed that a woman in her 50s had died of Covid-19 in southwestern Sydney; she is the mother of two movers who have traveled to regional NSW with the virus.

Of the 49 linked cases, 45 are household contacts and 4 close contacts.

The 78 positive results in the 24 hours to 8 p.m. Monday night came from 62,860 tests. NSW Health said 29 of the new infections have yet to be linked to known cases.

The outbreak of infections that started on June 16 in the eastern suburbs of Sydney has now reached 1,418 infections.

Greater Sydney is going through its fourth week of strict stay-at-home lockdown restrictions to slow the spread of the highly contagious Delta strain.

“If you live in a community where there are a lot of cases, even if you don’t have any symptoms, don’t assume you don’t have the virus,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“In communities where the virus is lurking, where the virus is circulating, you can have the virus, not know it and unfortunately take it home and give it to your loved ones.”

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