Welsh’s first minister, Mark Dreckford, said the sharp rise in the Covid case and the decision to start a lockdown in England was the right time to recover from his country’s 17-day “fire”.
Drakeford said the effects of the Welsh fire, which ended on Monday, would not be felt for a week or two, but expressed confidence that Wales’ initial steps would mean the country would reach Christmas without a major national lockdown.
In an interview with the Guardian, Welsh Labor leader Boris Johnson repeatedly insisted that the end of the crisis was under scrutiny, a claim that made the claim.
Drakeford said the epidemic had changed the state of the union forever, but argued that Wales should not become an independent country but already had the power to make its own decisions.
People in Wales will have the opportunity to meet more from Monday when a new set of national rules comes into force and pubs, cafes and restaurants reopen.
The changes, however, came at a time when there were as many covid patients in Welsh hospitals as there were in April, and the number has increased in some areas, especially in parts of the South Wales Valley.
Drakeford said: “Our decision to have a 17-day fire was based on the advice we gave at the time until we were really strict about our fire, three weeks and two weeks was enough to control the virus.
“The effects of the fire will not be felt for another two weeks, but we follow the advice following the science.”
Data from Wales’ Technical Advisory Cell (TAC) shows that the movement, which has returned to normal levels in May, has led people to respect the fire.
Drakeford said: “We made a tough decision, we’re going to do it on our own given we negotiated with people then if we make it as strict as we need it will last for 17 days. At that time a lot of people asked, is it necessary? Now I’m telling people we didn’t do it long ago. You have to set up your stall and keep your nerves. Our ambition was to find a way to find the rest of this calendar year.
Granted people are stuck putting out fires and now following the new rules, he said the country would be able to arrive at Christmas without another national fire or lockdown, but he said it was “not helpful” to guess what might be needed in the new “he year” Will be something we didn’t think of, ”he said.
Drakford refused to draw when the crisis was over and criticized Johnson for making over-optimistic predictions.
“When we get a vaccine, people provide more than a small amount of temporary protection. I think the Prime Minister has created problems for himself in terms of trust and credibility by regularly advising us to stay away from everything for a few weeks. [He said] It was going to end in 12 weeks, it was going to end completely before Christmas.
“Even when he was announcing a lockdown for England, he could not resist the final enrichment where he claimed it would end in the spring. I think the message consolidates people’s confidence. I’m sure it’s interesting for a few moments In the long run, it does not add credibility to the political leadership.
“I would never want to be in a position to tell the people of Wales it’s almost around the corner, it will be over soon. We are going to live with coronavirus for a long time. There are no magic bullets and I don’t think it helps to advise the people there. “
Relations between Cardiff and Westminster were strained many times during the crisis, when Wales banned people from coveted hotspots in other parts of the UK.
Drakeford said it was good to be involved in government in recent days, but he said the crisis has changed the union forever. “I think it will change the way Wales communicates. I have been regularly asked if there is a growing enthusiasm for independence in Wales. I think the coronavirus has shown that we have our own independent powers and a government that is ready to use these powers individually when we feel it is in Wales’ interest. “
The first minister called on the people to abide by the new rules – but said it was only part of the job. “We don’t want people to think: ‘How far can I extend the rules? What can I do? What else can I escape with? Everyone has to ask what I can do, but what should I do? “