The Prime Minister yesterday confirmed more than 15 million people in the UK have received their first Covid-19 vaccination. A remarkable total achieved in just over two months.
Shortly after the PM’s announcement, Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi said that government would now focus on delivering ‘jabs’ to all nine top priority groups before the end of April.
Ministers and MPs showed mixed reactions, with Health Secretary Matt Hancock saying: “As we roll-out the vaccine, it’s vital we all stay at home to protect our NHS & save lives.”
Steve Baker Conservative MP for Wycombe tweeted: “All pupils back to school by 8 March – Hospitality venues open by Easter – No legislative restrictions after 1 May – Vaccine must mean permanent immunity from lockdowns & restrictions.”
Sky News followed up the announcements with a live statement from the PM where in good spirits he said: “It has been a truly national, UK wide effort. We have done it together. And in England, I can tell you we have now offered ‘jabs’ to everyone in the first four priority groups, the people most likely to be severely ill from coronavirus, hitting the first target we set ourselves.”
But he ended with caution saying: “No-one is resting on their laurels. We’ve still got a long way to go to. And there will undoubtedly be bumps in the road. But after all we’ve achieved, I know we can go forward with great confidence.”
How the broadcast will be interpreted as far as indicating the content the PM will unveil in his roadmap on 22 February is open to conjecture.
There are clearly two schools of thought in the Conservative party and both will remain busy in the days ahead lobbying the PM to side with theirs. One school advocating easing restrictions as fast as possible. The other more cautiously favouring a gradual process.
For the PM, siding one way or the other is unlikely and politically risky. So, to avert swimming against either tide of opinion, he will steer a roadmap straight down the middle of the road.
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Hospitality & Catering News: PM to deliver a roadmap straight down the middle of the road. – 15 February 2021 – PM to deliver a roadmap straight down the middle of the road.
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