TUV leader, Jim Allister, has challenged a decision made earlier today by the Executive to introduce mandatory COVID vaccine passports.
Mr Allister said: “The Executive’s decision to press ahead with mandatory Vaccine Passports, which I believe is wrongheaded both in focus and effect, must be brought to the Assembly for an early vote.
“The common practice of voting on these proposals weeks after implementation won’t do. I welcome the First Minister – who appears to be in office but not in power – concurring on this point but note it was the Executive in the original COVID Regulations which introduced this absurdity of retrospective approval.
“Until now any restrictions have applied equally to all. Now, this move picks out a section of society for the special treatment of exclusion on a mandatory basis. This is wrong.
Encouragement of hospitality businesses and events organisers to seek proof of vaccine or a negative test is one thing, and to me acceptable, but to make such mandatory is a step too far. The clear purpose of the mandatory Vaccine Passport is to compel people to get vaccinated, yet, the Executive would not dare make vaccination mandatory but seeks the same outcome by the stealth of mandatory passports.
“I fear today’s announcement will needlessly breed division and take the focus of failures of the Executive to build up our hospital provision and the woeful tardiness in delivery of the booster jabs.”