Greater Manchester will move to a “very high” CCP virus alert level from Friday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced on Tuesday.
“Very high” is the highest level in England’s new three-tiered alert system. Pubs in Tier 3 areas have to close, and the mixing of households is banned.
The decision to put Greater Manchester under Tier 3 lockdown was reached after a 10-day negotiation between the government and Greater Manchester leaders ended without an agreement earlier in the day.
“Unfortunately, an agreement wasn’t reached. I do regret this. As I said last week, we would have a better chance of defeating the virus if we work together,” Johnson said at a press conference where he announced the decision.
Greater Manchester will get an extra £22 million ($28.5 million) support.
Johnson said the government had made a “generous and extensive offer” that is “proportionate” to the support offered to Merseyside and Lancashire, but the offer was turned down by Greater Manchester.
Just before Johnson’s announcement, Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham held a press conference, accusing the government of walking away from negotiations and calling for Parliament to intervene.
The government did not offer enough to cover 80 percent of people’s income, so people could “make ends meet,” Burnham said.
“It cannot be right to close people’s place of work, to shut somebody’s business, without giving them proper support,” the mayor said.
“65 million [pounds] is the bare minimum to prevent a winter of real hardship here. That is what we believe we need to preveRead More – Source
Queen Elizabeth and Duke of Edinburgh receive Covid-19 vaccine
Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh have received their Covid-19 vaccinations, a Buckingham Palace spokesperson said Saturday.
Dozens killed in suspected jihadist attack in Niger
Dozens of people were killed in an attack in Niger on Saturday, in a suspected jihadist attack.
The attack took place around 12:00 CET in the Tchomo-Bangou village in Tillabéri, a western region bordering Mali.
“The assailants surrounded the village and killed up to 50 people,” a local radio journalist said anonymously. “The wounded have been evacuated to the hospital in Ouallam.”
It came on the day provisional results for the first round of the presidential election, held on December 27, were released.
Mohamed Bazoum, the candidate for the ruling Party for Democracy and Socialism (PNDS) and a former interior minister, is in the lead with 39.3 per cent of the votes. Bazoum has vowed to strengthen the country’s fight against Islamist groups.
The second round of the election is to be held on February 21.
Niger has been a target for jihadist attacks for years, particularly in the western and southeastern parts of the country.
On December 21, six days before the presidential poll, seven soldiers were killed in Tillabéri. In May 2020, twenty people, including children, were also killed in two of the region’s villages.
Niger votes in presidential and legislative elections
People in Niger began voting in the country’s presidential and parliamentary elections on Sunday.
Mohamed Bazoum, the right-hand man of outgoing President Mahamadou Issoufou is the favourite to win.
The sixty-year-old former interior minister is aiming for outright victory in the first round — something that no candidate has done before.
He’s focussing on security and education.
Over 7 million people are eligible to vote. But some voters, like Gambina Moumouni, simply want a president they can trust.
“We pray to Allah to choose us the president who has the most mercy for the people, a president who will not betray the country and who will not betray the trust of the people, that is our wish. It is also our wish that Allah may help to make the poor, the peasants, the (cattle) breeders happy.
Thirty candidates are standing including two former presidents and two former prime ministers, but according to seasoned observers in the region, the poll is arousing little enthusiasm among the population.
Niger is the world’s poorest according to the UN’s Human Development Index and also one of those hardest hit by climate change.
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