Boris Johnson ‘Not imposing Tier 3 on Manchester due to fears over-policing’

Boris Johnson has backed down from imposing Tier 3 Covid rules on Manchester because he ‘feared police won’t enforce them effectively’ without the mayors backing.

The Prime Minister had previously said that he wanted ‘maximum local enforcement’ but that could only be achieved with ‘maximum local buy-in’. However, Greater Manchester Police currently answers to the city’s Labour mayor, Andy Burnham, who has so far adamantly refused to enter into the harshest restrictions.

Mr Burnham, who is the Police and crime commissioner, has the power to help set strategic priorities for local constabularies. It is understood that negotiations between the Government and Manchester’s leaders will continue over the weekend but it is thought that a decision is unlikely to be made before Monday. 

It comes after Mr Johnson hailed an agreement with Lancashire to move into the toughest lockdown level where it joins Liverpool as the only areas in the top bracket.

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Tony Winterburn

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