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Boris Johnson admits mistakes were made during pandemic

  • December 7, 2023
  • 2 min read
Boris Johnson admits mistakes were made during pandemic

Boris Johnson acknowledged that his government was slow to grasp the extent of the Covid-19 crisis. The former Prime Minister avoided questions about whether his indecision cost thousands of lives during the pandemic. Testifying under oath at the public inquiry, Johnson acknowledged that his government “underestimated the scale and the pace of the challenge” as reports of the disease began emerging from China in early 2020. The “panic level was not sufficiently high” he told the inquiry.

Former health secretary Matt Hancock told the inquiry last week that he had tried to raise the alarm inside the government. He said that thousands of lives could have been saved by putting the country under lockdown a few weeks before the eventual date of the 23rd March 2020. The UK would end up with one of Europe’s longest and strictest lockdowns while also having one of its highest death tolls, with the virus recorded as the cause of death for over 232,000 people.

The former PM admitted that the government has “made mistakes” but emphasised that it was collective failure rather than his own errors. Ministers, civil servants, and scientific advisers have failed to sound “loud enough klaxon of alarm” over the virus.

The inquiry hopes to learn lessons rather than assign individual blame. However, its revelations could do more harm to the former PM’s already damaged reputation as former colleagues, aides, and advisors paint negative picture of him during weeks of testimony.

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