James O'Brien responds to Cummings' new shocking accusations against PM

20 July 2021, 17:04

By Fiona Jones

James O'Brien reflects on Boris Johnson's performance throughout the pandemic, as former aide Dominic Cummings continues to throw damning accusations at the PM.

In a continued war of words, Dominic Cummings has claimed that Boris Johnson did not want to tighten restrictions last autumn as "the people who are dying are essentially all over 80."

The former aide has also claimed that he warned the PM against meeting the Queen during the first coronavirus wave as he "hadn't thought it through" - a week after this cancelled meeting the PM was hospitalised.

Read more: Dominic Cummings: The key quotes from Boris Johnson's ex-adviser

James surmised Cummings' claim that six months after the PM was hospitalised in intensive care with coronavirus and almost 60,000 people had died the PM was "telling his closest advisers and key allies that he didn't really buy the idea that the NHS could be overwhelmed and he'd gone off the idea of lockdown."

"This reportedly caused a six week delay last autumn between when the scientists wanted it to be done and Boris Johnson finally accepted it needed to be done.

"Who are you going to believe, Dominic Cummings or Boris Johnson? The bloke who stuck the lie on the side of the bus, or the bloke who drove it?"

James reflected, "This latest development that shows [Boris Johnson] was subscribing to the idea that because the average age for those who died was in the low 80s, then somehow lockdowns were unnecessary, and we could sacrifice a maximum of three million in this country aged over 80 in order to ensure that everybody else could go about their business."

James "could not get his head round" the mentality of suffering severely with Covid-19 in ICU and then failing to acknowledge the NHS could be overwhelmed, citing a previous accusation from Dominic Cummings that the PM stated he would "let the bodies pile high" rather than enforce a third lockdown.

"I struggle for words...this is just absolutely unbelievable," James said.