01 October 2020
The Coronavirus Act, which was introduced by the UK government in March and which sets out an extensive and extreme set of emergency powers, has been renewed in a vote by MPs. They were granted just 90 minutes to debate the measures.
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MPs vote to renew coronavirus act but brand government debate 'a disgrace' (The Herald, link):
"MPs have voted to renew the Coronavirus Act in parliament.
The motion to extend the act, which governs the laws around lockdowns, restrictions and enforcement, was voted for by 330MPs, with 24 against.
More than 300 MPs did not take part in the vote.
It comes after an afternoon of debate, with several MPs angered by the 90 minute time limit which had been put on the discussions.
Tory MP Sir Charles Walker said it was an “utter, utter disgrace”.
The former 1922 Committee chairman said: “Ninety minutes to debate the renewal of an Act that fundamentally has changed the nature of the relationship between the state and citizens is not good enough."
The Guardian reports that the "health secretary says MPs will be consulted and given prior votes where possible on significant lockdown measures in the UK but ministers must reserve the right to act quickly in emergencies during a parliament debate on the Coronavirus Act."
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