A Northland doctor and former New Zealander of the Year has admitted to flouting lockdown rules to go kayaking.

Lance O'Sullivan, who earlier this month blasted Kaitaia's lockdown efforts as "a joke" admitted the breach in a recent Facebook post.

"We've been living in a campervan doing our work for the Kaitaia community, but on the weekend I went for a kayak to a place not far from the place I'm staying," he said.

"I'm a dick and I f**ked up. F**k, what a silly bugger, eh? A silly bastard."


Kayaking and most water-based activities are banned under alert levels 3 and 4, as they come with an increased risk of spreading Covid-19 to emergency workers if someone needs to be rescued.

O'Sullivan said he'd behaved hypocritically, considering his recent admonishment of Kaitaia locals out and about during lockdown.

"This is Kaitāia, population 4500 to 5000, and the number of cars here is ridiculous. This is not essential services," he said at the time.

"So basically, go home, okay? Unless it's important."

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Today, he said he will continue to call out those breaking the rules, despite his recent behaviour.

"To be fair, I'm human - I've made many, many mistakes in my life [and] I'll make many, many more," he said.

"Should that stop me from standing up and saying when I see things that are wrong? S**t no.


"I'll keep doing it, and when I make mistakes, I'll tell you. But when I don't make mistakes and people call me out, I'll fight it. But in this case, I was a dick."

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Police have charged nearly 4000 people with breaching lockdown restrictions, many in the days before the Prime Minister announced the coming change to alert level 3.

There has been an uptick in reports of people stepping out of their bubbles, congregating in public areas and not obeying physical distancing rules.

As of 6pm on April 20, there had been 3800 breaches of alert level 4 restrictions since the lockdown began.

Six new cases of Covid-19 were announced today, as was the death of a woman in her 80s in Christchurch.

The woman had been considered a probable case and was from the Rosewood rest home cluster in Christchurch, from where seven others have died.

The total number of cases is now 1451. So far, 1036 have recovered, meaning the number of active Covid-19 cases is 401. Bloomfield said there are 11 people in hospital – two in ICU, in Middlemore and Dunedin hospitals.