Dominic Cummings, former top advisor to British Prime Minister Johnson, made a devastating statement before Parliament about the government‘s corona approach in the early days of last year’s pandemic. Cummings was still working for Johnson at 10 Downing Street.
Cummings calls the approach “disastrous”. According to him, the government reacted far too late to the outbreak in China and health authorities misjudge the danger of the virus.
“ The truth is that ministers, top officials and top advisers like me have failed in what the population in a crisis like this can expect from a government,” said Cummings. “I want to say to all the families of people who died needlessly how much I regret the mistakes that have been made, also by me.”
In the United Kingdom, 128,000 people died from the effects of corona. That is the highest number in Europe.
Prime Minister Johnson‘s spokesman says that the Prime Minister is not going to respond to everything that has been said. However, he argues that Johnson has complete confidence in Minister Hancock of Health, who was attacked by Cummings in the interrogation.
Cummings said that Johnson and his closest associates had no idea what was coming at them in February. Some of them went on a ski holiday in mid-February. Worldwide there were already 70,000 infestations worldwide and more than 1500 deaths, although for the most part they were still in China.
was only in the last week of February that Johnson and the Cabinet felt that something needed to happen quickly, said Cummings.
“ On March 14, we said to the Prime Minister: ‘You have to decide a lockdown‘, but there was no plan, it didn’t exist,” says Cummings. “We screwed up. Many people will die,” a former Deputy Minister would have said.
Nine days later, a lockdown was declared.
Johnson himself would have dismissed the pandemic threat as scare and a new swine flu, and even proposed to be injected live on television with the virus.
According to Cummings, Johnson believed that the emergence of group immunity was inevitable. That was what the government was striving for in March last year, said Cummings, and that situation should have been reached by September.
According to Cummings, the secrecy around the approach caused a ‘group bubble ‘to emerge in the early stages that made the adjustment of the course difficult.
Cummings believes that Health Minister Hancock should have been fired for lying to ministers among others. For example, he would have repeatedly said that there were enough protective equipment such as mouthcaps available.
Cummings has brought out many of his accusations before. Johnson‘s spokesman said earlier this week that the government has always been guided by scientific data and evidence.
Johnson said this afternoon in Question Time in the House of Commons that he is ‘taking full responsibility for what has happened‘.
“ But most importantly, the government has always had the intention to protect lives and the national care system, according to the best scientific advice available,” said Johnson. “That’s exactly what we‘ve done.”
Cummings in contradiction
Cummings was known as the architect of Johnson’s Brexit strategy. He was in contradiction last autumn because he had failed to comply with the corona measures.
Despite the political riot, he remained as an advisor. In November, he announced his departure before Johnson could show him the door.