The Scottish Government has been accused of failing businesses in the implementation of its Covid passport scheme.
From today, proof of full vaccination is required to enter nightclubs and large events in a bid to limit the spread of coronavirus and increase vaccine take-up.
Opposition parties branded the vaccine passport app a “shambles” on the day it was enforced across Scotland, following an 18-day grace period.
Murdo Fraser, Covid recovery spokesman for the Scottish Conservatives, criticised the Scottish Government for the lack of public awareness around the scheme.
His remarks come after Leon Thomson, executive director of UKHospitality Scotland, told BBC Good Morning Scotland that the chief issue around the roll-out has been “awareness rates amongst members of the public”.
In response, Health Secretary Humza Yousaf, said more than 700,000 people have downloaded the app and more than 750,000 have a paper copy, suggesting a “number of people that do have awareness of it”.
The SNP politician added that “where we can up the comms around this, we have intentions to do so” but said he thinks “awareness is very good”.
Mr Fraser said the Scottish Government “simply hasn’t bothered to run a campaign to educate the wider public about the new rules” and instead “expect Scottish businesses to do their work for them”.
He added: “Humza Yousaf’s suggestion today that the SNP have ‘intentions’ to ‘up their comms’, is just more of the same, embarrassing, last-minute scrambling to get on top of a policy that has been a disaster from the start.
“Businesses should not have to bear the brunt of the SNP’s shoddy policymaking.
“If the SNP won’t scrap these damaging requirements, they must at least produce a real, public awareness campaign, to support businesses to implement these checks.”
The measures technically came into effect from October 1, but an 18-day grace period was announced following backlash from affected industries and significant problems with the new app.
Scottish Labour’s health spokeswoman Jackie Baillie said: “The shambles that followed the release of the vaccine passport app was a predictable disaster.
“Weeks have passed and we have seen no change of plans despite concerns from the public, public health experts and businesses.
“This whole debacle has happened because the SNP are arrogant enough to believe they are right and Scotland is wrong.”