‘It will be LAW!’ Rishi Sunak dismisses fears lockdown will be extended past December 2
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Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Chancellor Rishi Sunak reassured coronavirus lockdown measures will end on December 2 as a “matter of law”. The Chancellor failed to give a date by which the Government will review the measures ahead of their expiration date, but confirmed the country is expected to return to a tiered approach from December 3. He said: “The regulations that are coming into force will be debated in Parliament.
“As a matter of law, it will be a four-week set of regulations that expires on December 2.
“So it is a matter of fact and law they will expire and be time-limited.
“In terms of review, I think it’s clear that the virus evolves and we have to and we do adapt and evolve as we see the information daily, as it is.
“I can’t give you a precise date but we will keep a watchful eye on this all the time.
“We’re getting data every day from all around the country.
“Our expectation and firm hope is, on the basis of everything we know today, the measures we put in place for the time that they are going to be in place for, will be sufficient to do the job we need, and we will seek to exit these restrictions back into a tiered approach at the end of the four-week period.”
Addressing concerns from fellow Tory MPs over the new measures, he added: “I appreciate everyone’s frustrations, that’s why measures like this should be a last resort.
“Our hope and expectation is that these measures will be sufficient to bring the R-rate to where we need it to be.”
The Chancellor added: “Although things are difficult in the short term, the longer we look out, I think there are reasons for cautious optimism.”
Pressed on whether the R rate was key to restrictions being lifted on December 2, Mr Sunak said: “It would be wrong to say there was one single indicator.
“There is a range of different things we look at.”
More to follow…
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