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More stringent restrictions needed for all international arrivals – Darren O’Rourke TD

6 January, 2021 - by Darren O Rourke TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Transport, Darren O’Rourke TD, has said the increased restrictions on travel announce today do not go far enough.

The Meath East TD said the Government must require all arrivals into our airports and ports to require a negative pre-departure Covid-19 test, and that 5 day post-arrival testing should be mandatory also.

His comments come as the Government announced negative Covid tests would be required for travellers from Britain and South Africa, but failed to provide a date when this will be expanded to all international arrivals.

Speaking today, the Meath East TD said:

“I am very concerned that the measures announced by Minister Ryan this afternoon do not go near far enough when it comes to international travel.

“We are now in a severe third wave of Covid-19 and exceptional measures are needed to curb the spread of the virus here.

“Our ports and airports have been a weak point in our defence against Covid-19 to date. The need to address this weakness has never been greater.

“Requiring negative pre-departure tests for arrivals from Britain and South Africa is simply not enough.

“All arrivals into the state’s ports and airports should be required to provide evidence of negative Covid-19 tests.

“I can’t understand how this was not addressed today given the seriousness of the situation here.

“In addition, testing here on day five post arrival should become mandatory. The voluntary system is being ignored wholesale by people.

“Proper follow up checks on the Passenger Locator Form also need to be radically improved to ensure arrivals are actually abiding by the restricted movement/self-isolation requirements.

“This should include fines for those who flout the self-isolation rules.

“The Government must ensure international arrivals are restricted to an absolute minimum until the crisis here stabilises, and our health service is no longer at risk of being overwhelmed.”

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