Gibraltarians enjoy fairground rides and stalls at Christmas fair
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Speaking on GB News earlier this month, the Brexit talisman said that despite it having one of the highest vaccination rates on the planet – a spike in Covid infections had prompted the radical action. He claimed that the British Overseas Territory’s Government “decided that Christmas is cancelled” because the infection rate had risen to three times the UK.
Mr Farage may have been referring to a statement by the Rock’s Government which said it intended to “cancel a number of its own functions including official Christmas parties, official receptions and similar gatherings”.
It also urged the public to “exercise their own judgment in this respect bearing in mind the current advice given”.
Claims that this statement amounted to cancelling the festive period were “vastly overblown”, according to people living on the Rock.
Jen Roberts – who has spent much of the pandemic there – shared numerous photos and videos at a Christmas fayre which opened over the weekend in John Mackintosh Square and Main Street.
It runs until January and has already been attended by thousands of people, she claimed.
She said: “It was buzzing and everyone was out having a fantastic time.
“There were families and children out enjoying themselves.
“Christmas isn’t cancelled in Gibraltar and anyone who is saying that is talking nonsense.
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“Some events have been cancelled but there’s still plenty going on.
“It’s scaremongering to say anything different and people should check their facts before they speak.”
Gibraltar’s First Minister Fabian Picardo also took to Twitter to rubbish the claims earlier this month.
He wrote: “Surprised I even have to say this BUT #Gibraltar has NOT cancelled Christmas.
“The Government has called for caution & for people to follow Public Health Advice from @PublicHealthGib.
“We’ve cancelled large, government organised events in order not to create vectors for infection.”
They spoke after Mr Farage used his platform on the UK’s newest 24-hour news channel to use the “cancellation” to urge Boris Johnson not to follow suit in the rest of the UK.
He said that the public was told that the “vaccine was the saviour” and “provided we have the vaccine, life could go on as normal”.
He added: “Gibraltar has arguably the highest vaccine rate of pretty much any country in the world.
“They’ve pretty much all been double vaxxed on Gibraltar.
“And yet there is now a spike in Covid infections in Gibraltar.
“Covid cases are certainly three times, perhaps four times, what they are in the United Kingdom.
“And the Gibraltarian Government has decided that Christmas is cancelled.”
Mr Farage went on to say that while the vaccine had benefits he believed “we’ve been sold a bit of a pup” by being told that being “double jabbed (meant) that life could continue as normal”.
He added: “Gibraltarians have lost Christmas. I hope and pray passionately that Boris doesn’t take away Christmas from us again this year.”
A spokeswoman for Gibraltar’s Government said: “In the first half of November Gibraltar experienced an increase in active cases of COVID-19. This was due to waning immunity from the initial doses of the vaccine that were rolled out very efficiently in February and March.
“However, the very low rates of severe illness and hospitalisations in Gibraltar show that the vaccines continue to protect against severe illness and hospitalisation. Gibraltar’s booster programme is progressing well and booster vaccines are now being rolled out to the over 40s.
“The low numbers of cases in the over 50s age range in Gibraltar is proof that the boosters are working.”
She added that the “numbers of active cases is now decreasing as individuals who tested positive at the beginning of November recover”.
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