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Toowoomba visitors put NT chief minister in COVID self-isolation

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Northern Territory Chief Minister Michael Gunner remains in COVID-19 self-isolation after coming into contact with family members visiting from Queensland and developing cold-like symptoms.

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Gunner’s family arrived in Darwin from Toowoomba on Friday, a week after a man infected with the UK strain of the virus started moving about the state’s southeast.

“He’s at home isolating waiting for his COVID test results to come back,” NT Deputy Chief Minister Nicole Manison told reporters on Tuesday.

“The advice from the chief health officer is that the risk is very low.”

The NT declared Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan, the Toowoomba region, the Moreton Bay region and Redland hotspots from 4.30pm on Monday.

Another eight coronavirus cases emerged overnight in Greater Brisbane, which was locked down for three days at 5pm on Monday to slow infection rates.

Gunner went into self-isolation late on the same day after calling into an NT’s COVID-19 state emergency management committee meeting from another office at NT parliament house.

“Some family members arrived and he’s got some minor cold-type symptoms and he’s doing the right thing and taking extra precaution here,” Manison told reporters.

She said Gunner’s family members were also self-isolating and would be tested for the virus.

“Clearly there’s a risk. I think the risk is really small but the fact the chief has some symptoms it’s very appropriate to go and get a test,” NT Chief Health Officer Hugh Heggie said.

Manison said she did not know when the chief minister’s COVID-19 test results would be made public.

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