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Mark Drakeford and Keir Starmer to address the nation on Omicron variant – at the same time

13 Dec 2021 2 minutes Read
Keir Starmer picture by Rwendland (CC BY-SA 4.0). First Minister Mark Drakeford. Picture by the Welsh Government.

The First Minister of Wales and the leader of the Labour party are both set to address the public on the need for action to tackle the Omicron Covid variant – at the same time.

Labour leader Keir Starmer has announced that he will address the nation in a pre-recorded message at 7pm tonight, which is expected to be broadcast on BBC One.

However, Mark Drakeford’s address to the nation has been set for the same time slot.

The First Minister’s statement is expected to tackle how the Welsh Government will accelerate booster programme in Wales.

Last night, Boris Johnson announced that the target to offer a vaccine booster to all adults in England was being moved from the end of January to the end of this month.

Mark Drakeford responded last night by saying the Welsh Government “may need to take further steps” to tackle the Omicron variant of Covid-19.

The First Minister warned that Wales is “facing a very serious situation” because the fast-spreading form of coronavirus “has the potential to cause a large wave of infections” in the country.

He said that this could lead to “large numbers of people” being hospitalised “at a time when our NHS is under significant pressure”.

This comes as the UK’s Covid alert level was raised to four for the first time since May after a joint decision by Wales, England, Scotland and Northern Ireland’s Chief Medical Officers.

Drakeford said the “booster dose of the vaccine is “vital” to combat the variant and urged people to make getting one a “priority”.

The Welsh Government is increasing the number of clinics as well as their opening hours, and has asked all available NHS to join vaccine teams.

Mark Drakeford said: “We are learning more about the omicron variant every day.

“This is a fast-moving form of coronavirus, which has the potential to cause a large wave of infections in Wales. This could lead to large numbers of people needing hospital treatment at a time when our NHS is under significant pressure.”

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Owain Morgan
Owain Morgan
1 month ago

If proof were needed that these two aren’t on the same page this is it.

Leigh Richards
Leigh Richards
1 month ago

Keir Starmer will be addressing the english nation and Mark Drakeford will be addressing the Welsh nation (corrected it for you 😉)

hdavies15
hdavies15
1 month ago
Reply to  Leigh Richards

That’s better ! If Starmer has any sense he’ll let Drakeford go off a few minutes earlier so that he can learn and adapt to better style of delivery.

Bob Snail
Bob Snail
1 month ago
Reply to  hdavies15

It’s not clear to me from the article who “booked ” the 7pm slot first. That would be interesting to know.

j humphrys
j humphrys
1 month ago
Reply to  Leigh Richards

Those of you who watch DW, RT and France 24, not to mention Scandia TV, will have noticed that rest of Europe are beginning to realise that the UK is not London.
Little victories are coming our way, so we must all push, whether in local newspapers or the Internet, the struggle continues. Let our voices be heard.
Yes Cymru!

Last edited 1 month ago by j humphrys
Welsh_Siôn
Welsh_Siôn
1 month ago

I know which of the two I’d prefer governing me and leading us in this crisis – and I’m not even a Member of their Party.

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