THE GOVERNMENT has ‘serious questions to answer’ about the COVID-19 test and trace system.

That is the view of MP Alex Sobel (Lab, Leeds North West) as lockdown restrictions begin to be eased.

Plans for a new NHS app for contact tracing - a method to prevent transmission of the virus by telling those who have been in touch with people who have tested positive to self-isolate - were announced back in April. The UK’s contact tracing system launched in May but there is still no sign of the app to support it.

Mr Sobel said: “We all want the Government’s plan for easing restrictions to work but this has to be done in safe and gradual way.

“The country cannot afford for the Government to get this wrong. Crucial to preventing this is having a ‘world beating’ track and trace system in place to prevent a rise in infections.

“The Government has serious questions to answer: the current system is not reaching around two thirds of those with suspected COVID-19; the app is nowhere to be seen; and local authorities don’t have the powers or resources to enforce local lockdowns.”