James O'Brien's powerful message to those blaming empty shelves on 'pingdemic'

22 July 2021, 13:47 | Updated: 22 July 2021, 14:01

By Fiona Jones

James O'Brien sends this powerful message to those blaming empty shelves on the NHS Test and Trace 'pinging' - instead of the rise in infection rates as England relaxes Covid rules.

James made his comment after multiple mainstream news outlets have blamed empty shelves on the 'pingdemic', including the Sun, the Daily Mail and the Times.

It comes as record high figures show that last week more than 600,000 people in England were 'pinged' and told to self-isolate by the app - an increase of 17% on the previous seven days.

This does not take into account the amount of people 'pinged' by the app this week, after Monday's 'Freedom Day' saw hundreds of Covid restrictions been removed.

Read more: Covid app ping live updates: Shoppers warned not to panic buy goods

James said, tongue in cheek, that before last week "only Remoaners" could see empty shelves, "now everyone around can see empty shelves, but it's not the fault of the coronavirus or even the Government, it's all the fault of the app.

"Which is exactly the same app which has been in place for all of the months."

Read more: ‘Pingdemic’: Shoppers warned not to panic buy as some shelves lie empty

With the app launching in September 2020, James pointed out: "For all of the months prior to July 2021 the app was in place and the supermarket shelves were not empty.

"So something's changed and it's not the app. So what is it? It's the infection rates."

He continued, "These ghouls who sold you Brexit, who put Boris Johnson into 10 Downing Street are now trying to blame the direct consequences of their own catastrophic failure to understand anything, and to encourage you daily to vote against your own best interests, to smack yourself over the head with a metaphorical frying pan every single day, they're now trying to blame what is happening as a result of their failure of leadership on an app."

Read more: 'Business is worse since Freedom Day due to crippling supply shortages'

He reeled off the months that the app has been in place and "your petrol station was still full of petrol, your supermarket was still full of food, and there was no danger whatsoever of Brexit Britain running out of gammon."

"But this month all of those problems are in place and the app is exactly the same.

"So if you hear anybody trying to blame this entirely on the app, ask yourself this: did they flog you Brexit as well? Did they encourage you to put this clown into Downing Street? Were they singing Dominic Cummings' praises this time last year?

"At some point you're going to have to wonder whether there's a bit of a pattern emerging on this, and it's a pattern that involves looking you in the eye and lying to you.

"Whether it's about Barnard Castle, whether it's about world beating coronavirus responses, whether it's about putting rings around care homes, whatever it might be you're going to have to accept but not just the politicians but the ghouls in the media as well, they're lying to you."

Read more: 'Pingdemic': One in three Brits either abusing or deleting NHS Covid app - survey