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English TV personality Piers Morgan has heaped praise on New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, revealing he wishes the UK had a leader like her.
Posting to Twitter, Morgan shared a video captioned a "brutal three-minute summary of New Zealand's Covid success versus the UK's failure", which has received more than 5 million views.
"This is incredibly damning. I wish we had a leader like Jacinda Ardern," Morgan declared online.
The viral video, which was created by Momentum, a left-wing British political organisation, highlights Ardern's rejection of the "herd immunity" strategy the UK tentatively proposed in the early stages of the pandemic, saying tens of thousands of New Zealanders would have died. The Kiwi PM's position is juxtaposed with a UK official claiming it's not possible to stop people contracting Covid-19 and it's "not desirable to do so".
The video also compares New Zealand's contact tracing success to that of the UK, as well as the stark theories the two leaders have on closing schools and the stresses each health system has been through.
While some of the issues facing New Zealand have been glossed over in the video, thousands of people reacted positively to Morgan's praise of Ardern and the criticism of UK leaders, with many saying Ardern's leadership during the crisis has been a success.
"Everyone bashing this fails to understand the comparison of the proactive approach from New Zealand and the reactive approach from the UK," one said.
"If the UK Govt had been proactive like NZ them we would be in a similar position as them but our govt said we'd take it on the chin instead."
Another added: "Me too, she's an amazing leader. People there must have a happy life. You can tell how downtrodden people are in the UK by their tweets, they have been groomed to accept receiving such disdain from a lying government. The Tories hate them, but they just keep standing up for them."
A third declared: "Amazing how Jacinda Ardern is so clear and decisive! In contrast to our incoherent answers."
"The difference in size between the two countries doesn't matter. What matters is the action that was followed. Jacinda Ardern was not willing to risk the lives of the people of her country, Boris Johnson was and there in lies the difference!"
However, others criticised the video, saying it's not fair to compare New Zealand to the UK.
"Not comparable! New Zealand's population 4.8 million, UK 66 million, New Zealand's density is 46 per sqm, the UK's 671 per sqm. NZ has low travel between cities due to huge distances and is not an international travel hub," one stated.
Another added: "Doesn't take into consideration the size and remoteness of the island and population in comparison to the UK. Yes they have done well and yes the UK could have done better but at least compare apples to apples."
It's not the first time Morgan has applauded Ardern for her Covid-19 response.
In April, the broadcaster praised Ardern for taking a 20 per cent pay cut during the crisis while criticising UK ministers for not following her lead.
Morgan interviewed UK's Health Secretary Matt Hancock on ITV's Good Morning Britain, where he slammed the MP for the suggestion.
"You're a well-paid person, some of your Cabinet are multi-millionaires. It would be nice if you took the lead of the New Zealand Government and took a pay cut," he said.
In response, Hancock said "everybody needs to do their bit".
"The way I am doing my bit is by working every hour God sends," he said.