Manchester City Council

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    Elected in 2019
    Elected in 2019

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Councillors angry at how lockdown was announced

Labour and Liberal Democrat councillors in Manchester have reacted angrily to the way the new lockdown measures affecting the city were announced, the Local Democracy Reporting Service has said.

Manchester city centre

Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced that increased measures were being brought in across parts of northern England via Twitter on Thursday night.

Councillor Pat Karney, the city centre lead for Manchester's Labour-led council, said it was not the right way to make such an important announcement.

We all agree with health actions that protect us but the continued shambolic messaging and information from the government is making matters worse.

This is not serious adult government.

John Leech, the leader of the council's Lib Dem opposition, also criticised the move, adding that he was not sure if the government "would lockdown the whole of London in the same way they have Greater Manchester".

Residents urged to 'pull in the same direction'

People "must not be complacent about the continuing risk of Covid-19", the leader of Manchester City Council has said in response to the new lockdown measures imposed on the area.

Sir Richard Leese
PA Media
Sir Richard Leese is the leader of Manchester City Council

In a statement, Sir Richard Leese said:

Over the last week, we have seen a significant increase in cases in nine of the 10 Greater Manchester boroughs [and] the evidence is that most of this transmission is now taking place in community settings and particularly people's homes.

It's important that we take these preventative health protection measures - which, however inconvenient are still relatively moderate - now to avoid the need for more severe measures and a Leicester-style lockdown.

It's impossible to stress that the more people abide by these rules, the quicker they will be lifted [and] it's important that we all pull in the same direction to avoid a resurgence of coronavirus in our area.