Millions of Britons are looking forward to the lockdown ending. But could it be later than we were led to believe?
Yesterday (January 6th) MPs voted to approve England’s third national lockdown.
In his address to the nation over the weekend, Boris Johnson signaled that it could end around the February halftime.
When does the suspension end? What did the MPs vote on?
After a four-hour debate in the House of Commons, ministers said the restrictions could remain in place until the end of March.
This means that the prime minister can keep the country locked until then without going to ministers to request an extension.
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Lockdown has been touted as the only way to get the COVID-19 virus under control until the most vulnerable are vaccinated.
And as general practitioners are instructed to withdraw to routine health care and focus on vaccinations, things will accelerate.
However, it appears that Boris is not taking any chances.
MPs voted for the new lockdown by 524 votes to 16, with the Prime Minister winning by a majority of 508 votes.
Their approval was given after the fact, and Boris announced the country would be locked down earlier this week.
MEPs want the right to vote again
During the debate, Matt Hancock was asked to give MPs the right to vote twice more on the restrictions before they expire on March 31st.
You want to decide at the end of January whether the “extreme controls” will continue.
They also want a vote in late February.
Hancock replied that the government doesn’t expect the lockdown to continue until the end of March. Although legal now it can.
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“While these regulations include new restrictions through the end of March, we don’t expect the full national lockdown to continue until then,” he said.
He added that it would “allow for the steady, controlled and evidence-based movement through the plains on a local basis”.
“Restrictions are constantly checked”
Hancock continued, “These animal changes require a vote in Parliament.
“The restrictions are therefore constantly being reviewed.
“There is a legal obligation to check every two weeks and a legal obligation to remove it when it is no longer deemed necessary to limit the transmission of the virus,” he concluded.
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