The UK’s Daily Mirror has slammed New Zealand for releasing a details of the intended itinerary for the royal tour of New Zealand by William, Catherine and their son George.
In a move that will put at risk any possible knighthood for John Key, the Governor General of New Zealand has handed potential terrorists and nutters a “manual” on the family’s movements.
We knew that New Zealand has a fairly cavalier attitude towards safeguarding tourists’ safety but this really is blunder of epic proportions. It isn’t a good look for a country that is acutely aware of its image abroad and it comes at a time when its Prime Minister is leading the charge for a change to the country’s flag to remove the obvious reference to its ‘colonial’ past.
The royals arrive there on Monday, (God help them) and the country’s Governor General has been slammed after tweeting precise information of where the public can see them, including timings and maps of their routes.
Former head of Royal Protection for the Met, Dai Davies described the guide as a “manual” for terrorists, “nutters” and “fixated people” hoping to harm them.
He said: “I’m appalled at the idiocy of any idiot who would publish this far in advance both route and location.
“It is seriously worrying and I’m frankly amazed that anyone is doing it. I’ve never known anything like it in 20 years.”
He added: “I find it almost unbelievable someone would do this. It’s a manual and it goes against anything I believe in. Appalled is the word.”
The Twitter account for Governor General Sir Jerry Mateparae – the Queen’s representative in New Zealand – revealed the information to help fans spot the couple .
Messages included: “Hamilton: Your best opportunity is the route between Hamilton Airport (they arrive at 11.10am) and Pacific Aerospace.”
Another read: “Map of the best paces to wait to see TRHs on their public drive down Beaumont/Jellicoe St.”
And another said: “TRHs arrive at the Military Terminal Wellington Airport at 11.45am. But round the bays is the best spot to see them!”
While it is not unusual for engagements to be announced in advance, precise timings are almost always kept a secret until they arrive because of security risks.
@Dai Davies: this IS New Zealand. A place famed not for its joined-up thinking but for the ‘quality of the visitor experience’ – ‘100% pure you.’ No doubt all will be made good at the Kiwi cultural boozy barbecue feast.
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