NDP lays blame for Regina COVID-19 variant outbreak at government’s feet

·2 min read

Regina– Regina is seeing growth in COVID-19 cases, most of which are linked to “variants of concern” (VOC) which are up to 70 per cent more transmissible than initial COVID. On March 16, the Ministry of Health reported, “The Regina zone accounts for 122 (or 90 per cent) of the confirmed VOC cases reported in Saskatchewan,” which has the New Democratic Party expressing concern.

In response to rising COVID-19 variants in Regina and area, Official Opposition Health Critic Vicki Mowat said in an emailed statement on March 16, “Today we are seeing the consequences of the Premier’s failures on COVID-19.

“This afternoon the Premier and Dr. Shahab addressed the media for the first time since the government’s decision to relax household bubble limits and worship service limits last week.

“The Premier made that decision despite the fact that the Saskatchewan Health Authority had warned against it, citing concerns with high community transmission, low testing and increased cases of variants of concern - particularly in Regina.

“The huge explosion in confirmed and suspected variants of concern in Regina has forced the government to urge people in Regina not to do what they were just told they were allowed.

“The Premier’s chaotic handling of COVID-19 has led to mixed messages and confusion for Saskatchewan families. Not to mention the worst results in the country for the majority of 2021.

“Scott Moe failed to act to prevent the second wave of COVID-19 when it hit the province. And Saskatchewan families are paying the price.

“At every step of the way, particularly since November, the government has done the bare minimum while missing opportunities to reduce the spread of COVID-19. All while the Premier has pointed fingers and refused to take responsibility for his handling of COVID-19.

“Scott Moe’s poor decisions meant we have been left with the worst of both worlds: a crumbling economy with 23,000 more people unemployed and the worst COVID-19 results in Canada.

“The Premier must be accountable for these decisions, and the impact they have had on families that have sacrificed so much to keep each other and their loved ones safe.”

Brian Zinchuk, Local Journalism Initiative reporter, Estevan Mercury