‘End in sight’ but we must exercise caution, says Troy

(Above) MInister of State Robert Troy

The end of the pandemic is “in sight” but people have to “exercise caution” to ensure that the country isn’t hit with a fourth wave of Covid-19 in the interim.

That’s according to Minister of State Robert Troy, who told the Westmeath Examiner that while the easing of restrictions and the successful roll out of the vaccine programme are positive developments, it is too early for people to let their guards down.

"What we are witnessing is a very positive, gradual and phased reopening of our society and our economy. It is hugely beneficial to the business that have endured a very challenging 14 months. Now we have all of our non-essential retail opened, hotels are opening from tomorrow [Tuesday], outdoor dining and socialising from next week. It is very positive.

“What I would say is that while the end is in sight, we are not there yet and we still have to exercise caution. The reason why this was done on a phased basis is to ensure that it was last time [the country went into lockdown] and we want to make sure that that materialises.

“We still have a strong prevalence of the virus in the community, but thankfully our vaccinations are rolling out very strongly. We need to be mindful, though. There is a reason why we are opening on a phased basis. There is a reason why there are still restrictions there. We need to adhere to them to ensure that we get to a full reopening later on in the summer,” he said.

Deputy Troy is marrying his fiancée Aideen Ginnell on July 15 and the couple are pleased that by then they will be able to invite 50 people.

The only member of government getting married this year, he says they are looking forward to celebrating with their nearest and dearest.

“It will be a family wedding. That’s really it. I am the youngest of 12 so when you invite your siblings and their spouses that takes care of my 25.”