By Chris King •
Updated: 02 Jun 2022 • 17:43
NADHIM ZAHAWI the vaccine minister has assured that Covid passports WILL be required to enter larger venues this Winter to avoid more closures
Nadhim Zahawi, the UK government’s vaccine minister, speaking to Trevor Phillips on Sunday, when pressed on the topic of healthy 12 to 15-year-olds being vaccinated, replied, “We have not made any decisions, so we haven’t decided not to listen to the experts”.
Adding, “On the contrary, all four ministers, the secretary of state Sajid Javid, and his fellow ministers in the devolved administrations, have agreed to ask the chief medical officers to convene expert groups, including the JCVI being in that, to be able to recommend which way we should go”.
This question was put to the vaccines minister by Mr Phillips after the decision had been made by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), not to vaccine young people simply on health grounds, as it has been shown that the coronavirus presents a relatively low risk to that age group, although a review is still ongoing by the UK’s chief medical officers to decide whether there could be a wider range of benefits in jabbing them, which they believe could include reducing school absences.
Mr Zahawi also gave his assurance that if approval was to be given, that parental consent would have to be given before any young person was vaccinated, commenting, “I can give that assurance, absolutely”.
When quizzed about vaccine passports being used in England, Mr Zahawi responded, “We are looking at, by the end of September, when everyone has had the opportunity to be fully vaccinated, for the large venues, venues that could end up causing a real spike in infections, where we need to use the certification process”.
“If you look at what the FA has done, they’ve done so brilliantly in terms of checking vaccine status to reopen football. That is the sort of right thing to do and we are absolutely on track to continue to make sure that we do that. There’s a reason for that… the reason being is that, I, as does the prime minister, want to make sure the whole economy remains open”.
As he added, “The worst thing we can do for those venues is to have a sort of open-shut-open-shut strategy because we see infection rates rise because of the close interaction of people, that’s how the virus spreads, if people are in close spaces in large numbers we see spikes appearing. The best thing to do then is to work with the industry to make sure that they can open safely and sustainably in the long term, and the best way to do that is to check vaccine status”.
He concluded, “Nobody enjoys, by the way, in this government, certainly not this prime minister, having restrictions on people’s freedoms. It goes against the DNA of this government to do that”, as reported by news.sky.com.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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