Taoiseach believes people will "be patient" if planned lifting of restrictions doesn't go ahead next week 1 month ago

Taoiseach believes people will "be patient" if planned lifting of restrictions doesn't go ahead next week

The Taoiseach has said there will continue to be "twists and turns" with Covid-19.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin says he believes people will "be patient" if the planned lifting of restrictions next week does not go ahead.

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As it stands, a number of restrictions are set to be lifted on Friday, 22 October, including requirements for physical distancing, as well as the wearing of masks outdoors and in indoor private settings.

Nightclubs are also planning to open their doors on the date after being closed for over a year and a half.

This week, however, a number of Government heads have cast doubt on the planned reopening due to a recent rise in Covid-19 cases and hospitalisations.

The Taoiseach warned on Wednesday that the major easing of restrictions planned for next week can't be guaranteed as the "pandemic has not gone away".

Meanwhile, Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn on Friday described the country's Covid-19 situation in the past ten days as "deteriorating", with incidence of the virus rising across most counties and age groups.

Speaking on Friday, the Taoiseach said he would not give details on which restrictions would remain or be removed next week before receiving advice from NPHET but praised the public for its continued patience throughout the pandemic.

"I think people have been patient. I think people understand this pandemic now," he stated.

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"They know there has been and will continue to be twists and turns in relation to the disease.

"But the key point is that we're in a much different position now than we were because of vaccination - it transforms the environment totally, so this is a different approach."

The Taoiseach was then asked if he believed people would remain patient if they were told the easing of restrictions will be delayed.

He responded: "I think people have been patient all along the way and I think, whatever happens, people will be patient.

"We've opened up an awful lot. The economy has come bouncing back with so many sectors.

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"I think people liked the phased reopening process from early springtime when we opened up different sectors.

"Thousands of people have come back to work. So, that's the good side of the story so far and I think the bulk of people have stayed with us through all of those periods."

A decision on the lifting of restrictions will be made on Tuesday.

Main image via Sasko Lazarov / RollingNews.ie

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