WHO Covid-19 special envoy says he would 'rewrite the script' over lockdown buzzword

22 August 2020, 10:48 | Updated: 22 August 2020, 11:03

Ewan Quayle

By Ewan Quayle

A World Health Organisation special envoy on Covid-19 has said he would "rewrite the script" to remove the phrase 'lockdown' from the pandemic.

Dr David Nabarro expressed dislike for the word, which he described as having bad connotations and sounding authoritarian.

He told LBC's Matt Frei: "I wish I could rewrite the script and not use this word 'lockdown' - it's got very bad connotations and sounds awfully authoritarian.

"What we're trying to do is try and to get everybody to work together in a local area where the number of cases are rising and interrupt transmission."

He added: "We are asking people to restrict their movement - that's the key message.

"We're asking you not to roam around and move around if you're socialising and just to be respectful."

Dr David Nabarro has told LBC that he dislikes the phrase 'lockdown'
Dr David Nabarro has told LBC that he dislikes the phrase 'lockdown'. Picture: LBC/PA Images

Dr Nabarro called on countries to start focusing more cooperation than criticising each others' strategies for dealing with the virus.

He warned: "I really would like every country to stop comparing themselves with each other - this is not a beauty contest - this is all of us working together on the same.

"I'm really keen to stop looking backwards and just look forwards.

"I think we are beginning to get it right and I also believe that everybody throughout Britain is getting the message about the virus.

"It will fall into place and we'll be able to get on with our lives and keep the virus at bay."