Responding to the First Minister's Covid briefing, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton said:
"I understand the worry and dismay that so many will be feeling at the emergence of a new variant.
"For months I have been arguing that the contact tracing system is not sufficiently rigorous and well-resourced to break chains of infection. We were lucky that vaccines arrived when they did because otherwise the system would have completely collapsed. This was a huge failure on the part of Scottish ministers.
"It is time to turn on the taps and deliver fresh resources. Contact tracing staff who are run off their feet and reduced to sending text messages to close contacts of Covid-positive people cannot keep us safe.
"We have seen scientists, NHS staff and contact tracers display immense determination, invention and creativity to beat back the virus. The Scottish Government must ensure that it has the same laser-like focus to keeping the country safe."