In January, the World Health Organisation amongst many other establishments warned Boris Johnson and the Conservative government of the incoming Covid-19 epidemic. Additionally, at this time, the Health Secretary Matt Hancock stated that the UK were "well prepared" to deal with an outbreak of Coronavirus (BBC 2020). However, Boris Johnson ignored these warnings; he was more concerned in a failed attempt to raise funds to make Big Ben bong to celebrate the United Kingdom “leaving” the E.U. Speaking in the House Of Commons in January – when the outbreak of Covid-19 in the UK was a beginning to become a real threat, he was quoted saying “If the public want Big Ben to bong, and the money is raised then that is great. We will make sure that whatever happens in regard to Big Ben’s bongs, 31 January is properly marked. It is a significant moment in our history.” This arises questions about what the true priorities and urgencies were of the Conservative government.
When Coronavirus was beginning to greater impact the United Kingdom, and take its toll, the whole country was looking for answers about what action would be taken to combat this terrible disease. When speaking on national television on March 5th, one of the theories Boris Johnson set forth was too “take it on the chin”, in other words - herd immunity. This was the original plan, and if it hadn’t been for the backlash from all elements of the political spectrum, we could have seen 500,000 people die in the U.K alone.
Boris seemed smug as he stated he “shook hands” with Covid-19 patients, and even boasted about doing so. This recklessness was more than likely the reason for him contracting the virus himself. Furthermore, in one of the early press conferences, he adopted a ‘keep calm and carry on’ attitude (Walker, 2020) – something which is perhaps looked back on in shame and regret.
Over the past few weeks we have seen so many failings from this government it would be almost impossible to fit them in to a single article, and the fact that Boris Johnson has said it’s been a success should make everyone shake to their core in anger. They have failed us all.
But hey, shoplifting is down.
BBC News. 2020. 'Increased Likelihood' Of China Virus Reaching UK. [online] Available at: <https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-51221915>
Walker, P., 2020. Boris Johnson's Big Ben Brexit Bong Plan Falls Flat. [online] the Guardian. Available at: <https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/jan/14/boris-johnsons-big-ben-brexit-bong-plan-falls-flat>
Walker, P., 2020. Tom Peck: Yes, People Will Die, Says Boris – Just Keep Calm And Carry On. [online] The Independent. Available at: <https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/boris-johnson-coronavirus-delay-outbreak-china-schools-football-matches-a9398651.html>