Government to demand extension of Covid emergency powers


The government will today call for a further extension of the emergency powers of Covid-19 to the Dáil.

The extension would be for three months, and that would mean that measures such as wearing masks and using vaccine passports will remain legal until February of next year, the Irish Examiner reports.

The government said the extension is important to deal with the unknowns of the pandemic, allowing the swift introduction of regulations to stop the spread of the virus.

Sinn Féin will vote against the extension.

David Cullinane, the party’s health spokesperson, said they would reject the extension as it keeps all the emergency powers of the laws in place with a limited number of restrictions pending.

“The time has passed for a long time that they should be kept,” he said.

“If the minister wants anything to remain, like location forms and masks, he should introduce primary legislation that deals only with those restrictions.”

“It allows the minister to make regulations without debate, a recent example being the nightclubs where we had last minute regulations and no discussion, no debate and no monitoring, but we are all held to account even if we haven’t been in. There can be no more blank checks.

“The elements of public health measures need to be retained, but this can be done through primary regulation rather than leaving it all on the books.”

Richard Body Barrett has confirmed that his party, People Before Profit, will also vote against the extension.

“These were always very draconian measures and, in the face of the pandemic, extraordinary measures were perhaps more justified but we were always concerned about excessive powers like this, which can alienate people rather than encourage,” he said. he declared.

Social Democrats and Labor will decide before this morning’s debate.

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