Date set for when Boris Johnson faces Covid inquiry under oath

Date set for when Boris Johnson faces Covid inquiry under oath

Boris Johnson will soon face the Covid Inquiry and will be questioned under oath. The former Prime Minister is expected to provide evidence across a two-day period on Wednesday, and Thursday next week, over his time in No 10. Current Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is expected to appear at the same inquiry the following week.

Mr Johnson will likely face some difficult questions, including claims that he said he would rather “let the bodies pile high” than enforce another lockdown during the pandemic. He had previously denied making such remarks, but his former chief-of-staff, Lord Lister, told the inquiry earlier this month that he heard Mr Johnson making the statement during a meeting in September 2020, the Mirror reports.

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Questions may also arise over scathing diary entries from Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Patrick Vallance, who said he was “obsessed with older people accepting their fate and letting the young get on with life and the economy going”. He also recorded in December 2020 that Mr Johnson told him Conservative MPs think “the whole thing is pathetic and Covid is just nature’s way of dealing with old people”, before adding: “I am not entirely sure I disagree with them.”

Meanwhile, Dominic Cummings and former No10 director of communications Lee Cain both told the inquiry that Mr Johnson laboured over key decisions and would frequently change his mind. In a WhatsApp message sent a fortnight before the first lockdown, Mr Cummings told the PM at the time: “The overwhelming danger here is being late and the NHS implodes like zombie apocalypse film – not being a week early.”

He added that it was “pretty insane” how many senior government officials went on holiday during the half term instead of helping prepare for the pandemic.

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