Coronavirus: Boris Johnson fears second peak of loosening lock

0
78


Boris Johnson

Image copyright
Reuters

Boris Johnson has expressed concern to his colleagues that overly relaxing the lockdowns could lead to a second outbreak of coronavirus.

PM reportedly met his assistant Dominic Raab at Checkers on Friday to discuss the crisis.

He reportedly told Mr. Raab and others on video that stopping a second peak was his priority.

This comes after criticism that Mr. Johnson did not chair or attend the first five meetings on the virus.

Cabinet Minister Michael Gove confirmed on Sunday that the Prime Minister had not participated in government emergency meetings with the Cobra – as reported by the Sunday Times.

Ghost Secretary Jonathan Ashworth accused Johnson of being “missing” at the start of the crisis.

But a government spokesperson said it was “perfectly normal and appropriate” for Cobra to be chaired by the relevant secretary of state rather than the prime minister.

They added that Boris Johnson “has been at the helm of the response to this situation, providing leadership during this extremely difficult time for the whole nation.”

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden also defended his boss, saying the Prime Minister “was informed daily and daily” and “became interested in the virus early on.”

“Constructive” meetings

The PM is currently staying at Checkers – the Prime Minister’s retreat to the country – while he is recovering from a coronavirus, and is not officially back at work.

But his official spokesperson said that Johnson received daily written updates on the government’s response to the crisis.

He also confirmed that the Prime Minister had met part of his No. 10 team at Checkers.

Raab – who replaces the Prime Minister during his convalescence – held another virtual meeting with leaders of opposition parties to brief them on how the government has handled the epidemic.

A spokesperson for Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer said the meeting was “constructive” and “reiterated his support for the government’s decision to extend the lockdown”.

But he said Sir Keir reiterated his calls for more details on the exit strategy to end the measures and “expressed concern” regarding the availability of PPE.

Plaid leader Cymru Westminster, Liz Saville Roberts, has said that the four British governments must agree on “how and when” the lock is lifted.

Speaking after the meeting, she said, “If the lock is lifted in a country or region because it has passed the” peak “, not only will we see confusion, but the potential movement of people across the UK, which in turn could lead to higher infection rates and, above all, unnecessary pressure on local health services. ”

What should I know about coronavirus?

Government sources said that the review of the foreclosure measures in three weeks would result in changes, rather than widespread easing.

BBC deputy political editor Norman Smith said the government’s fear of a new epidemic is not only due to more deaths, but also to the impact it would have on the economy if employees were sick and unable to work.

He also said the belief is that the additional impact on businesses that were forced to remain closed in a second lockout would be more profound.

The Prime Minister’s spokesman said a second peak in the epidemic “would ultimately do the most damage to health and the most damage to the economy”.

And he warned that if the lockdowns were changed too quickly, it could risk the virus “spreading exponentially.”

“Facts and Evidence”

Dowden said the government would take appropriate steps to facilitate the “evidence-based” foreclosure.

But he made reference to Mr. Johnson’s earlier statement that it could take 12 weeks to “turn things around” on the virus.

Dowden told BBC Radio 4 Today: “What happened is sort of consistent with that.

“But we will take appropriate action based on the facts and evidence, and that has not changed. “

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here