Mark Drakeford today announced all major coronavirus restrictions will be lifted in Wales over the next two weeks as he faced accusations of ‘overreacting’ to the Omicron wave.
The Welsh Government will reopen nightclubs, end the rule of six in pubs and lift the 50-person limit on outdoor events.
Mr Drakeford, the Welsh First Minister, had warned just one week ago on January 7 that the Omicron ‘storm is fully upon us’ as he predicted the peak would not arrive for ‘another 10 to 14 days’.
He also slammed Boris Johnson’s decision not to impose similarly tough restrictions in England as he branded the neighbouring country an ‘outlier’.
But speaking today, Mr Drakeford said case numbers are now ‘coming down very rapidly’ as he rejected accusations of a U-turn.
He also dismissed claims that his restrictions had caused massive damage to Welsh hospitality firms, saying: ‘The impact on Welsh businesses doesn’t come from the actions of government, it comes because of the huge impact of the Omicron wave that we have seen.’
Hospitality bosses welcomed the decision to ease the rules as they said the latest restrictions had pushed businesses ‘to the brink’.