.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Wednesday, December 08, 2021

UK Government goes into lockdown to avoid foot-in-mouth virus

The rumours about a secret Downing Street party last Christmas, when hundreds of people were dying in hospital and millions were obeying the law by staying home, unable to see relatives or celebrate in their usual way, all came to a head yesterday, when a video was leaked to ITV confirming that all the denials were lies after all, and that staff had indeed broken the law by socialising together.

This morning, the chances of finding a Government Minister or spokesperson in the media, even to convey essential public health information, was about as remote as Larry the Downing Street cat emerging onto the street with a dodo clasped firmly in his jaws.

The Independent reports that Boris Johnson's government has gone to ground with no government minister being made available to broadcasters to defend Downing Street’s record, despite invitations:

All Britain’s main national broadcasters empty-chaired the government as the political storm broke. It is understood that Sajid Javid, the health secretary, was due to appear on the BBC, ITV, and Sky News at breakfast time – but withdrew from the regular slot following the release of the video.

The dynamite footage, obtained by ITV News, shows the prime minister's then spokesperson laughing and joking with other officials about the Christmas party – which No.10 insists did not happen despite mounting evidence.

She jokingly suggests referring to the bash as a "business meeting" or "cheese and wine" to get around the rules.

Amid fury over the footage no alternative minister was offered to broadcasters by the government to represent its position – prompting speculation that the administration was unable to muster anyone willing to go on air and defend it.

The Independent understands that even allies of the prime minister were shocked by the footage and believe it is indefensible.

Speaking on the BBC Radio 4 Today programme, presenter Nick Robinson said: "We were expected to speak to the Health Secretary. That invitation was kept open after the video emerged last night, but the government chose to withdraw that interview with Sajid Javid."

Viewers on BBC Breakfast television were meanwhile told: "Usually at this time here on Breakfast we would be able to put your questions to a government minister as part of a slot we've had on the programme at 7.30am pretty much every morning since the start of the pandemic.

"We had been hoping to speak to the health secretary Sajid Javid ... but this morning no one has been available to speak to us. So this is the shot of the Westminster studio that we would normally show to you this time most mornings of the week. As you can see there's nobody there today, and that's every unusual. The camera's ready, the seat's there, we can take an interview at any moment."

The presenters of ITV’s Good Morning Britain said they were “still waiting for somebody from the government to turn up today”, and issued a challenge”:

“If any Conservative MP, anybody connected to the government is watching and you would like to take your duty and answer to those people who lost family members, there is a Westminster seat available for a government minister this morning.

“We'll take anyone. Anybody from the Conservative party, any MP who feels that it is their duty to address the nation, address their constituents, address the 140,000 people who lost family members in hospitals, followed the rules, couldn't attend funerals, couldn't be at hospital bedside while people partied in Downing Street.”

And on Sky, presenter Kay Burley said: “Normally we'd ask a government minister about this. We were told originally that it was going to be the health secretary Sajid Javid because of course it's the first anniversary of the first vaccine being administered. But sadly now we've been told that nobody's accepted our invitation. We've not even had a proper RSVP.”

For once the Tories are taking social distancing seriously, it's just that in this instance we'd rather they didn't, and instead come on the airwaves to explain and apologise for this further example of arrogance, hypocrisy and entitlement.
Stratton laughing the mock questions.Is this why Johnson abandoned DowningStreet press briefings cos she is a poor liar? Also a posting re Mogg laughing at the fact the party will not be prosecuted has come to light. It does make me wonder that they knew they were breaking the rules by laughing at us all (including Tory voters).

Being a cynical suspicious type is it possible that Johnson gave Dicks a dameship to 'get her on his side' for I hear (via twitter) that they knew each other in the 80s at Uni?
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?