Coventry MP calls for ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown

Zarah Sultana voiced her concern over the “rapidly” rising cases in Coventry, with more than 100 new cases in 24 hours.

Pictured: Zarah Sultana MP addressing Matt Hancock MP in the House of Commons on 15 October.

Zarah Sultana MP has called for a ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown to be imposed on the UK to combat the spread of coronavirus.

Sultana made the call in the House of Commons on Thursday when questioning Health Secretary Matt Hancock.

The Labour MP for Coventry South cited the advice of SAGE, the Scientific Advisory Group on Emergencies, who advised the Government to impose a ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown for two to three weeks.

SAGE documents revealed, in their view, there were solid grounds to suggest a short ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown would have “similar levels of effectiveness” to that of the national spring lockdown.

The Government instead opted for a three-tier system, with household mixing indoors banned in areas of highest concern and businesses remaining broadly open.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said the new system’s regional approach aimed to “seize this moment now to avoid the misery of a national lockdown”.

Sultana highlighted to Hancock that back “in March, the Government was advised by the SAGE committee to lockdown. The Government delayed by a week and senior scientists estimate that the delay cost tens of thousands of lives. I fear the same mistakes are being made again.”

Hancock responded by saying “that isn’t an accurate description of history”.

Sultana continued by bringing to the Health Secretary’s attention the “rapidly” rising cases in Coventry, noting “more than 100 new cases in 24 hours”.

Hancock replied that he is “working with the leadership of Coventry City Council” and invited Sultana to the table.

Speaking after her statement in the House of Commons, Sultana reaffirmed that “cases are rapidly rising in Coventry and across the country.”

She urged the Government to “introduce a circuit breaker lockdown” accompanied by fresh economic support focused on “assisting jobs and businesses in Coventry struggling”.