British Prime Minister Boris Johnson referred to the inability of his health minister, Matt Hancock, to increase coronavirus testing capacity at the start of the pandemic as “utterly hopeless”, according to private messages revealed by his former chief adviser.
Dominic Cummings released malicious WhatsApp messages on his phone Articles Wednesday. They showed that Johnson considered firing Hancock in a letter he sent to his former aide on April 27, 2020, in which he revealed that he believed the provision of personal protective equipment was a “disaster”.
Johnson added in the letter: “I can think of nothing but to take off Hancock and stop him [Michael] Gough on. “
The comments undermine Downing Street’s insistence that “the prime minister has full confidence in the health secretary”, showing Johnson’s doubts about Hancock’s abilities during the health crisis.
Downing Street said on Wednesday:[No 10] Don’t plan to deal with every claim. The Prime Minister announced that we will conduct a formal investigation next year. . . Our focus is on recovering from the pandemic,” he said, adding that Johnson has full confidence in Hancock.
“The prime minister has worked closely with the health minister throughout this pandemic and will continue to do so,” No. 10 said.
In his blog, Cummings said Johnson had a “clear plan to leave at the latest two years after the next election,” adding that “he wants to make money and have fun and not ‘keep on.'” No. 10 dismissed the allegations as “pure nonsense.”
In May, Cummings revealed in parliamentary testimony that he had repeatedly called for Hancock to be fired due to the failures and “lies” at the start of the pandemic. Hancock Refusal Ever tell Johnson any lies.
Another WhatsApp exchange from March 27, 2020 showed that Cummings is complaining that the Ministry of Health has rejected respirators for price reasons. “It’s Hancock,” Johnson replied. “He was hopeless.”
The third exchange occurred on the same date, showing Cummings complaining that the US had gone from 2,200 tests per day to 27,000 to 100,000 in just two weeks. By contrast, Hancock was “skeptical” about the UK reaching 10,000 daily tests by the following week, according to Cummings.
“Completely hopeless,” Johnson replied.
Hancock eventually set a goal of 100,000 daily tests in early April, which was met a month later.
Britain’s lack of testing capacity at the start of the crisis has been the focus of criticism for the government.
One of Cummings’ most damaging claims was his suggestion that Hancock Johnson reassured everyone Moved from hospitals to nursing homes It will be pre-tested, which it didn’t. Hancock defended himself, insisting that the test was done when there was sufficient capacity.
On his blog, Cummings said Downing Street forced Hancock to create a more ambitious testing plan than 100,000 daily tests.
“Hancock is creating a new version of reality, coming up with the idea to ramp up testing before March 14,” he wrote, adding: “Reality: As part of the move to Plan B, Number 10 imposed a new testing plan on Hancock, who was still operating under assumptions Plan A/herd immunity in the week of 16/3 where community testing was of no use”
former assistant Johnson was charged last month of presiding over a chaotic and unprofessional response to the pandemic that has led to tens of thousands of unnecessary deaths.
“If No10 was willing to lie deeply and widely on such vital issues of life and death last year, he cannot be trusted now either on Covid or any other important issue of war and peace,” he wrote on his blog.
Hancock announced this week that the lifting of lockdown measures will be pushed back to July 19 to enable the NHS to vaccinate all those in their 50s, healthcare workers and the most vulnerable.
Speaking at the Prime Minister’s Questions, Labor leader Keir Starmer argued that Johnson’s “hesitation” over putting India on the travel red list had led to the UK-wide variable delta spread being first identified in India.
“The British did their homework, following the rules and vaccinating. But the prime minister squandered it by allowing a new species to enter the country,” he said.
Public health advisers warned earlier on Wednesday that the spread of the delta variant had accelerated the number of new infections and hospitalizations in the UK.
“What we are seeing at the moment is around 7,000 to 8,000 infections a day… but we know that is less than half of the real infections in the community,” Susan Hopkins, deputy director of the National Infection Service for Public Health England, told MPs on a select committee.
She added that without vaccination or social restrictions, the number of childbearing could rise to 7 across the country, which means that out of every 10 people infected with the Corona virus, another 70 will be infected.