Nightclub chain owner attacks PM’s ‘populist claptrap’
A nightclub boss attacked Boris Johnson for his lack of leadership and his “populist claptrap” over plans to impose vaccine passports on the industry.
Peter Marks, managing director of Rekom UK, said he believed the clubs had been ‘hunted down’ because the Prime Minister understood that the introduction of similar restrictions on pubs would be extremely unpopular.
Rekom’s brands include Pryzm, Eden and Fiction.
Mr Marks told PA: “What we have here is a government, especially a prime minister, which is more driven by public opinion and opinion polls than I think is sane.
“Sometimes you have to show leadership and I don’t think this man has that. I question his judgment. I think he’s really good at boosting morale, and I’m certainly not anti-Boris per se, but I think it was a terrible error in judgment on his part.
“Highlighting the nightclub industry has no basis other than populist messages and I totally disagree with that.
“To be fair, bang, [and introduce vaccine passports], in the vain hope that nightclubs will be so popular with those under 30 that it will make them shrug their shoulders and get a passport, is delusional.
“We will not accept passports as a condition of entry until we are instructed to do so because it is a suicide note for us.
“If this is enforced, I will not break the law. I would never do that. But the reality is, I’ll keep drumming until common sense prevails, but that’s because it’s populist blah blah.
In response, the government said its plan was to protect people in places where Covid-19 was most likely to spread.
Passports for the vaccines will not arrive until September, a spokesperson said, “by then anyone aged 18 and over will have had the chance to be fully vaccinated.”
They added: “The NHS Covid Pass is designed to be simple and easy to use and we announced this change more than two months in advance, to warn sites to prepare. “