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Sturgeon ‘dragging her feet’ on Scots’ holiday prospects

6 Jul 2020

Nicola Sturgeon has been accused of “dragging her feet” on a decision relating to air bridges with Scottish airports.

The First Minister today conceded she was still swithering on where Scottish holidaymakers would be allowed to fly from this summer.

That’s despite a number of deals being struck for passengers elsewhere in the UK, meaning they have certainty on whether or not they can take a foreign holiday this summer.

The SNP had previously blamed the UK Government for the delay, but Scottish Conservative leader Jackson Carlaw said that excuse was now wearing thin.

At today’s briefing, she said would need more time to consider which, if any, countries to include.

She also refused to accept SNP government responsibility for passengers from incoming flights not being checked for abiding by quarantine regulations.

The Home Office has confirmed the Scottish Government had access to the necessary data since June 8.

Yet health secretary Jeane Freeman made no mention of this when faced with the accusations yesterday, instead blaming the UK Government for the problem.

Scottish Conservative leader Jackson Carlaw said:

“Nicola Sturgeon is dragging her feet on this issue and that’s not good enough for hardworking Scots who deserve a break.

“This isn’t an issue of people getting the privilege of a luxurious holiday – it’s about giving people who’ve endured months of lockdown a desperately needed rest and change of scenery.

“That’s what’s happening elsewhere in the UK, but for some reason the First Minister wants it to be different for Scotland.

“Time is running out – Scotland is already on an earlier summer rota than the rest of the UK, and people planning a break for their family need this uncertainty cleared up now.”

On quarantine checks, he added:

“Nicola Sturgeon has repeatedly said that she and her SNP government are fully responsible for every element of Scotland’s coronavirus response.

“Yet in the last few weeks, an unknown number of people have arrived in this country and the SNP government has no idea who they are, where they are, or if they’ve abided by these vital rules.

“It seems the First Minister wants to take responsibility when things are going right, but at the first hint of a problem she looks for someone else to blame.

“The SNP’s deceit on this matter has been exposed, and now ministers should be working to resolve this rather than looking for scapegoats.”