Gordon Brown tells LBC: Cummings messages show 'what we all feared - Govt was chaotic'

16 June 2021, 17:38 | Updated: 16 June 2021, 17:47

Gordon Brown says Cummings spat shows government was 'chaotic'

By Will Taylor

Gordon Brown has said Dominic Cummings' leaked messages mean a public inquiry should be held to see if ministers were "so far behind events that lives were put at risk".

The former prime minister told LBC’s Eddie Mair they showed the government was "chaotic" during the Covid outbreak.

His comments follow leaked messages purportedly showing Boris Johnson describe Health Secretary Matt Hancock as "totally f***ing hopeless" and branding the PPE situation in April 2020 as a "disaster".

They were published by Dominic Cummings, an ex-aide of the PM's.

Mr Brown said: "I think this shows what we all feared - that it was pretty chaotic in government, and may still be, when they were trying to grapple with the biggest problems that I think governments have faced over many, many years, that they were fighting among themselves.

"I mean, when you've got a crisis, you've got to get down to it and you've got to get people working together and you've got to actually really be two or three steps ahead of events, you can't be behind the curve.

Read more: F***ing hopeless: Cummings leaks 'PM's Whatsapp exchange over Hancock'

Read more: Blackford asks for PM to confirm the messages leaked by Cummings

Former PM Gordon Brown on 'f***ing hopeless' Hancock

"And it seems that at every point, if we're to believe these emails, the government was behind the curve and not really getting a grip of the problem, and that meant that there was less testing done, that there was less protection against the disease.

"And therefore, it does mean that when the final public inquiry is carried out people will have to look at this information to see whether they were just so far behind events that lives were put at risk."

Downing Street did not deny the leaked messages are authentic and said that Boris Johnson has full confidence in Mr Hancock.

Mr Cummings has claimed Mr Hancock should have been sacked for several things, including lying in Cabinet room meetings. He said the minister wanted to use scientific advisers as a shield from criticism.

Mr Hancock has denied the ex-aide's allegations and said it was "telling" Mr Cummings had not provided written evidence backing up his claims.

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Rishi Sunak criticised Labour's proposed plans to tackle migration rates in the UK.

UK would be ‘illegal migration capital of world’ under Labour, Sunak says as he sets out plans to ‘stop the boats’

Labour has made cutting knife crime a 'moral mission' should the party come to power

Labour makes cutting knife crime a 'moral mission' as Starmer proposes new child criminal exploitation offence

Spanish police are investigating if Jay's 'background' is relevant to the disappearance.

Spanish police searching for Jay Slater investigate if teenager’s background is ‘relevant’ to his disappearance

Lord Kinnock has said he would not wish being part of the current Tory government on his 'most bloodthirsty enemies'.

‘I wish I was fighting this lot’, ex-Labour leader Lord Kinnock says as he brands current Tory party 'superficial and hollow'

The president of Finland has said he 'doesn't agree with many things' Nigel Farage says in response to his comments on the war in Ukraine.

'Absolutely not': Finland's president dismisses Nigel Farage’s claim that Nato provoked Russia's war in Ukraine

A man went missing in the water off Bournemouth beach (file image)

Huge search operation launched for man missing in water off Bournemouth beach

Bosses face £1,000 fine for letting employees watch England's Euros clash with Denmark in the office

Offices showing England v Slovenia Euros clash could face hefty £1,000 fine

Princess Anne has been injured by a horse

King Charles sends 'fondest love’ to Princess Anne who will ‘quickly bounce back’ after being hit by horse

Callum the stag was "humanely euthanised".

Tourists blamed for death of 'legendary' stag after it was fed Rice Krispies and croissants

The Reform UK leader's comments came as he spoke to supporters at a rally in Kent on Tuesday, slamming the current government's ability to control immigration.

Farage warns of Channel migrant 'invasion' from countries 'with terrorism, gang culture and war zones'

Gavin Plumb is accused of plotting to kidnap Holly Willoughby

Obsessed security guard ‘plotted to keep Holly Willoughby in dungeon where screams couldn't be heard for miles'

At least two people have died in the fire

At least two dead as Moscow defence research centre bursts into flames ‘with staff trapped inside’

Parisians along River Seine, below Cathedral Notre Dame celebrate Fête de la Musique - annual city-wide music festival each June

British woman 'gang-raped in Paris at music festival'

Florida rapper Julio Foolio has been shot dead

Florida rapper Julio Foolio shot dead during his birthday in Florida

Meg Bellamy played Kate Middleton in The Crown

The Crown star Meg Bellamy reveals trolls branded her 'too fat' to play Kate in the show

Jay Slater's father has urged people to come forward if they have any information on his son's disappearance

'Someone must know something': Jay Slater's father speaks out as search for missing son stretches into second week