Today, Parliament voted on the extension of the Coronavirus Act for another 6-month period. North Herefordshire MP, Bill Wiggin refused to support this extension instead choosing to abstain.

Bill Wiggin, MP for North Herefordshire said:

“Following today’s announcement from the Health Secretary and the subsequent vote, it is with regret that I cannot support the Government in extending the Coronavirus Act.

There are concerns over the lack of scrutiny Parliament has had when wide-ranging decisions are made.

Though concessions were made, they did not go far enough.

In my speech on Monday (read here) I was clear that a 6-month extension was unnecessary and MPs must be given more opportunity to scrutinise decisions.

I said: “We need to remember that both sides of the House are united in wanting to beat the disease and I know we would be complaining if we sat on the other side of the House, so we need to involve all MPs to get necessary actions approved.”

My position on this has not changed because the concessions given today, although welcome, did not go far enough.

We could be 3 months from the roll out of a vaccine.

It is my firm belief that when we get the vaccine out to those most vulnerable in our society, we can begin to open up again.

The Government has secured 190 million doses with at least 100 million available by the end of the year.

We should be putting all efforts into vaccines as quick as possible and I will continue to push for this.