WELLINGTON: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was turned away from a popular cafe in Wellington because of COVID-19 social distancing restrictions.
On Saturday, Ardern and her fiancee Clarke Gayford decided to get brunch at Olive, a restaurant in the capital Wellington but was turned away because it had already reached its limit of customers.
“Omg Jacinda Ardern just tried to come into Olive and was rejected cause it’s full,” a Twitter user named Joey wrote at about midday.
Omg Jacinda Ardern just tried to come into Olive and was rejected cause it's full. 💀
— Joey 🧜🏻♂️ (@reinvention) May 15, 2020
A few hours later, Arden’s partner, responded to his tweet taking the blame for the brief hiccup to their day.
“I have to take responsibility for this, I didn’t get organised and book anywhere,” he wrote. “Was very nice of them to chase us down st when a spot freed up. A+ service.”
I have to take responsibility for this, I didn't get organized and book anywhere. Was very nice of them to chase us down st when a spot freed up. A+ service.
— Clarke Gayford (@NZClarke) May 16, 2020
The restaurant’s owner, who wish not to be name confirmed the New Zealand Herald that no exceptions were made for Ardern and the couple, who are engaged to be married, were initially turned away by the restaurant manager.
“She had a lovely brunch and left half an hour later,” he told the paper. “She was lovely with all the staff … [and] she was treated like a normal customer.”
Ardern has been widely praised after New Zealand had scored a swift and significant victory against the spread of the coronavirus.
She has taken bold steps, putting the country under a strict lockdown in late March. Her motto: Go hard and go early.”
A total of 1498 people have been infected with COVID-19 in New Zealand including 21 deaths.