Auckland Mayor Phil Goff says he's told the organisers of Auckland's Polyfest that they should call off the four-day event.

The cultural event was due to go ahead from March 18 to 21. The trust that runs the event has been contacted for comment on Goff's call for its cancellation.

Polyfest attracts up to 90,000 to 100,000 people ever year. Photo / supplied
Polyfest attracts up to 90,000 to 100,000 people ever year. Photo / supplied

"To date the Ministry of Health advice has been that the risk of community spread of the virus remains low. However, internationally we are seeing that cancelling large gatherings has been adopted to help reduce the spread of the virus. We believe that this needs to happen here," Goff says.

"I anticipate that there will be cancellations or scaling back of council events. We will make final decisions following the government's announcement on nationwide gatherings.

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"We have already conveyed to the Polyfest Trust over the weekend our strong view that Polyfest must be cancelled. While disappointing for those who have put so much effort into organizing and preparing for the festival, public health and safety must be the paramount consideration," he said.

The Polyfest Trust last night said it had been meeting with the Auckland Regional Public Health Service, and Ministry of Education regarding this year's festival.

"There are further meetings required in the morning with key stakeholders. A decision on whether the 2020 ASB Polyfest will proceed or not, will be announced tomorrow afternoon.
We appreciate your patience and will advise you of a final decision," the trust said.