London, May 10 (efe-epa).- The United Kingdom’s government on Sunday swapped out its “stay at home” slogan for “stay alert” as it readies to present a roadmap on how to exit the lockdown.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson will detail a new color-coded alert system for the de-escalation which, according to British press, will include green for level one and red for level five.
The plan from the Conservative Party government was met with immediate backlash from political opponents and even derision from several well-known figures on social media.
The leaders of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have all signaled that they would not be adopting the approach taken by the central government in Westminster, despite several government ministers insisting that all four nations in the UK should move in lockstep.
Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s first minister and head of the pro-independence SNP, tweeted: “STAY HOME. PROTECT THE NHS. SAVE LIVES.”
Scotland has a higher infection rate per capita than the rest of the UK.
Andy Burnham, a member of the Labour Party and mayor of Manchester said: “Feels to me like a mistake to me to drop the clear #StayAtHome message at this particular moment.”
Harry Potter author JK Rowling joined in with a sarcastic take on the new slogan: “Is Coronavirus sneaking around in a fake moustache and glasses? What the hell is ‘stay alert’ supposed to mean?”
Comedian and former doctor Adam Kay said: “A bit difficult to stay alert to something that’s 0.0001 millimetres in diameter. This pandemic is going to have as many spikes as a coronavirus.”
In a pre-recorded speech, Johnson will later give further details on the UK’s plan to gradually reduce the nationwide restrictions on the movement and people in place since 23 March.
The government has already announced it planned to reopen garden centers but said the de-escalation would be done with “caution” and there would be no drastic measures in the short-term.
Johnson could also announce new quarantine measures for people arriving in the country from abroad.
Before he addresses the country, the PM will get in touch with the leaders of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, as well as the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, in an effort to get them onboard with their plan.