The Malta Independent 24 January 2022, Monday

PN calls on government to scrap Covid measures set to be introduced on Monday

Wednesday, 12 January 2022, 17:55 Last update: about 11 days ago

The Nationalist Party has called on the government to scrap the measures set to be introduced on 17 January, which effectively make the vaccine booster mandatory.

Given that two-thirds of the country have already taken the booster while the less virulent Omicron has become the dominant strain in Malta, the PN believes the measures no longer strike the right balance between public health and people’s freedoms. 

The party said that, while it fully supports the health advice to take the vaccine and the booster for both personal and public safety reasons, it also believes in the rights of people to take their own decision, especially in the changing context of the pandemic.

Those who are sceptical of the booster are more likely to be convinced by medical advice from a trusted doctor than by being checkmated by the government. PN is confident that given the right information, people will be responsible in their choices and attitudes, while being more respectful towards others, especially those who are vulnerable. 

The party noted that the measures, which many view as excessive and discriminatory, will also add another burden on employers who are already facing huge difficulties with labour supply, increased costs and added bureaucracy.

The measures also create unnecessary difficulties for those who did not yet receive an invitation to take the booster, such as 15 to 18-year-olds or people who had Covid or were stuck in quarantine and could not get the booster in time, it said.

The PN said it believes that even if the government plans to retain these measures, it must be much more transparent in the science on which it is basing these decisions and explain why Malta has gone further than most countries even in terms of the duration permitted between vaccine and booster.

It reiterated its call for self-testing kits to be made legal and available, as the number of active cases increase and the call centres and public testing facilities become harder to access. 

 

 

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