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State against state, but not exactly mates, and you'd better not expect a text

Politics

Gladys Berejiklian won’t bother texting or calling Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk after the State of Origin match.

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“No, I’m over that to be honest. And it’s not just about me and her any more,” the NSW Premier told ABC TV when asked about the match to be played on Wednesday night.

The annual light-hearted rivalry between premiers over State of Origin has disappeared as the pair remain at loggerheads over the shared border, with Sydneysiders still not welcome in the Sunshine State.

Berejiklian has been publicly agitating for months for free travel between the states but has been rebuffed, with calls and texts to Palaszczuk not returned – until the one that rubbed in the Blues’ loss in the first State of Origin match.

Berejiklian has not hidden her frustration at the impasse, arguing both states’ economies are suffering with the restrictions.

“I think I’ve made my case clear. And she’s made her position clear. And I don’t think that she’s going to budge,” she said.

“It’s a lot at stake. I think that the goalposts that Queensland has set for opening the borders to NSW is unrealistic, and I just wish that they would act in a more compassionate and common-sense way,” she said.

NSW had recorded three consecutive days with no locally acquired COVID-19 and there was “absolutely no health advice which says that NSW poses a danger to anybody”.

“Quite the contrary. We have tested our system. Queensland hasn’t. WA hasn’t,” she said.

She noted that from November 23, every Australian citizen will be welcome in NSW without quarantine, and also already welcoming New Zealanders without quarantine.

“We’re really encouraged by the progress we’re making. But let’s not be in a situation where people lose jobs, are frustrated and separated from their families over Christmas unnecessarily. It’s just ridiculous,” she said.

-AAP

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