United Kingdom my arse

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By Damian Walters, BiKBBI Chief Executive

I’ve remained supportive of our government throughout this pandemic on the basis of these unprecedented times, but the lack of cohesion and political points scoring now in full swing is unforgivable and potentially more damaging than this virus itself.

Without doubt, Coronavirus is serious and sadly here, at least for the foreseeable future. We’ve a long few winter months ahead and we must all get used to it’s presence and threat.

But what’s grinding my gears is a real lack of clarity for the people and an unwillingness to come together at a time of crisis.

On one hand we’re being told to “work together to defeat this virus” and to “look out for each other” – but on the other hand we’ve Boris Johnson (England), Nichola Sturgeon (Scotland) and Mark Drakeford (Wales) all playing different tactics, akin to football clubs planning a European Championship campaign.

England’s three tier campaign, Scotland’s five tier and Wales in total lockdown, it feels like the Isle of Man should announce six tiers, take of its shirt and run to into the crowd in celebration.

But in reality, we all lose this match.

It’s this embarrassing tit-for-tat bickering amongst senior politicians and subsequent indecisiveness that is causing confusion and is leading people to just feel like throwing in the towel, with an attitude of “I can’t be arsed with all this anymore”.

Governments fighting governments, opposing parties taking cheap shots like fans criticising football managers from the stands. It’s all getting a bit ridiculous isn’t it.

Wales announces country closure on a Monday, stating that tradespeople cannot continue to work in other peoples homes due to the deadly severity of coronavirus and less than 24 hours later and on Tuesday it U-Turns and all of a sudden it’s ok, as long as you wash your hands. Really? Did the science change overnight?

Meanwhile, Welsh jobs cancel, businesses are distracted as they plan for closure and anxiety peaks as people worry about their futures once more. Why? Because there’s a lack of unity and there’s more focus on winning political battles than actually working together to deal with this challenge.

Why three governments and respective political parties cannot come together and form a United Kingdom (like it says on the front of those new blue passports) is beyond me.

Once this pandemic has passed, and it will, one can only hope that wholesale policy change is initiated, because if anything I’ve learned that our ability to handle crisis as a United Kingdom is embarrassing and the fiscal and emmotional cost of this failure will out-live this poxy virus.

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