Political Hot Potato! MP lobbies for The Wiggles after entertainers fail to secure MIQ space

The Wiggles Emma, Lachy, Anthony and Simon are facing their own hot potato after failing to get...
The Wiggles Emma, Lachy, Anthony and Simon are facing their own hot potato after failing to get spaces in quarantine head of their New Zealand tour. Photo: Supplied
A New Zealand politician is offering top level intervention for Australian kiddy supergroup The Wiggles whose upcoming tour is in jeopardy after failing to secure quarantine slots.

More than 40,000 tickets have been sold to their We're All Fruit Salad Tour! which is due to kick off on March 19 in Invercargill.

The 14-day tour, which spans the length of the country, marks 30 years of entertaining for the iconic children's entertainers in their trademark colourful skivvies.

But, as with many entering New Zealand, they have struggled to land a slot in MIQ.

Former National leader and dad-of-three Simon Bridges is making a direct plea to authorities to intervene.

In a tweet he revealed he was drafting a letter to ask authorities that they "do what they can" so the Wiggles' shows can go ahead across New Zealand.

Bridges revealed the kids' band had missed out on spaces claiming it was down to visa approval delays.

While cast and crew had all the approvals they needed to travel here from Australia, the slots for the mandatory 14-day stay in isolation weren't available, he said.

"I've just drafted a letter to the powers that be asking that they do what they can so the Wiggles can do their 25 scheduled shows across New Zealand in March and April. Over 40,000 tickets have already been sold.

"The cast and crew have all approvals they need to come from Aussie but due to visa approval delays the MIQ slots that were available aren't anymore.

He said he ended his letter disclosing "a conflict in that my two older children have grown up adoring the Wiggles and my youngest child, aged three, is obsessed by them and may well go to their Tauranga concert if it happens. I suspect any MP with kids under a certain age will have the same conflict".

Tickets went on sale for the 25-show tour in late November.

The group were granted exemptions just before Christmas under a critical worker category.

According to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment spaces in managed isolation are extremely limited until the middle of February.

The Wiggles and their promoters Live Nation have been approached for comment.

Last year, Yellow Wiggle Emma Watkins told the Herald she was excited at the prospect of touring here.

"We've sold out so many tickets in the pre-sales I joked to the guys: 'Why don't we just add a whole other week on the end? Just go back and do every city again so nobody misses out.' We're gonna try and squeeze in as many shows as we possibly can. We're honestly so excited. We love New Zealand and are so looking forward to coming over."









Local trusted journalism matters - now more than ever

As the Covid-19 pandemic brings the world into uncharted waters, Star Media journalists and photographers continue to report local stories that matter everyday - yours.

For more than 152 years our journalists have provided Cantabrians with local news that can be trusted. It’s more important now than ever to keep Cantabrians connected.

As our advertising has fallen during the pandemic, support from you our reader is crucial.

You can help us continue to provide local news you can trust simply by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter