Sadiq Khan: The Government has failed to secure our borders

1 February 2021, 14:48 | Updated: 1 February 2021, 14:52

By Sam Sholli

Sadiq Khan has told LBC the Government has failed "to secure our borders" during the Covid crisis.

The Mayor of London's words come amid reports that there are Government ministers pushing for a temporary closure of all UK borders to curb the spread of coronavirus.

The debate around how the Government should handle UK borders has come under more spotlight after the number of cases in England of the South Africa Covid-19 variant rose to 105.

Speaking to LBC's Shelagh Fogarty, the Mayor of London said: "I have little doubt that when there is an inquiry about how the Government has conducted itself during this pandemic, one of the failings will be the Government's failure to secure our borders.

"Even now, we are 11 months on [and] it's still possible to come to the UK [and] London from many parts of the globe and simply jump on the tube and go about your business. That cannot be right."

Referring to the South Africa Covid-19 variant, he added: "Now we've discovered that there is this particular strain of virus.

"But you don't necessarily need to come directly from Africa to have this virus. You could go to a third country..."

Experts advising the Government said they did not think the current vaccines would need to be tweaked to deal with any spread of the South African variant.

To date, 105 cases of the South African variant have been identified in the UK since December 22 but all of those had links to travel.

Experts believe the 11 new cases may also have second or third generation links to travel but detailed investigations have not identified any such links.