The Daily Telegraph

Johnson’s vaccine passports scheme facing collapse

- By Ben Riley-smith POLITICAL EDITOR

‘We oppose vaccinatio­n status for access to venues and services. It’s costly, open to fraud and is impractica­l’

BORIS JOHNSON faces defeat in the Commons over his plans to introduce vaccine passports after Labour indicated it would oppose the measures.

A Labour spokesman said making people show proof of a Covid-19 jab for “everyday access” to venues was “costly, open to fraud and is impractica­l”.

The Prime Minister said on Monday he would change the law to require proof of two doses of Covid vaccines for entry into nightclubs and “other venues where large crowds gather”.

To do so he must hold a vote in the

Commons and the Lords but is now facing opposition from both Labour and the Liberal Democrats.

At least 42 Conservati­ve MPS have signed a petition opposed to Covid certificat­ion being used for “general services, businesses or jobs”.

A rebellion on that scale could be enough to overturn Mr Johnson’s Commons majority of around 80 seats if all other opposition MPS voted against.

A Labour spokesman said: “We need to see the detail of what the Government puts forward regarding vaccine passports. We oppose the use of Covid vaccinatio­n status for everyday access to venues and services. It’s costly, open to fraud and is impractica­l.

“Being double jabbed doesn’t prove you aren’t carrying the virus.

“Testing for access to venues would be more efficient, and would give people and businesses more certainty.”

Mr Johnson said that he would bring forward plans to require proof of two vaccine doses for clubs and other settings by the end of September.

By then, everyone over 18 would have been offered two doses under the Government’s plans, countering claims of discrimina­tion for demanding checks.

Mr Johnson made clear he was taking the move in an attempt to drive up vaccine uptake among the young, with concern growing in Whitehall at signs of a drop-off in jabs.

There remains doubt about whether he will ultimately push ahead with the vaccine passports plan come September, given he could drop the move if enough young people are jabbed. The position of the SNP, which has the third most seats in the Commons, on vaccine passports remains unknown.

Meanwhile lockdown-sceptic Tory MPS are threatenin­g to boycott the Conservati­ve Party annual conference in October in protest over the push to legislate on vaccine passports.

One prominent Tory rebel on Covid rules, who asked not to be named, said: “I assume the Prime Minister will be insisting on vaccine passports for the Conservati­ve Party Conference.

“If he does, then I suspect significan­t numbers of Conservati­ve MPS and activists will refuse to attend.”

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