Boris Johnson hits back at Dominic Cummings' allegations
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In a brutal attack on Wednesday, the Prime Minister’s former senior aide said “tens of thousands of people died, who didn’t need to die” during the pandemic as a result of the Government’s mistakes. Mr Cummings told a committee of MPs that Boris Johnson was “unfit for the job” of leading the country.
Speaking to BBC Newsnight on Thursday, Mr Hoare said that, in his opinion, “Cummings has behaved appallingly”.
He added: “Is Cummings really trying to dupe us to believe that he sat at the very heart of No10, saw supposedly all this chaos and weakness and lies and everything else and didn’t breathe a word of it, didn’t blow the whistle, didn’t resign?
“No he sat there in the heart of it and kept banking the cheque. It is implausible beyond belief.
“This time last year we were all calling him Machiavelli.
“This time, this year, he wants us to think of him as St Augustine. It really doesn’t work.”
On Thursday, Mr Johnson rejected claims that Government mistakes led to thousands of COVID-19 deaths.
The Prime Minister said some of Mr Cummings’ “commentary” didn’t “bear any relation to reality”.
He added that “at every stage we’ve been governed by a determination to protect life, to save life, to ensure the NHS is not overwhelmed”.
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During the hearing, Mr Cummings also described Health Secretary Matt Hancock as “completely incapable of doing the job” and said he “should have been fired” for lying.
The former aide said he repeatedly urged Mr Johnson to fire Mr Hancock.
Mr Hancock told MPs in the House of Commons on Thursday that Mr Cummings’ “allegations around honesty are not true”.
He added: “I’ve been straight with people in public and in private throughout.”
Speaking to BBC Newsnight, Mr Hoare said if Mr Cummings wanted to be seen as a “prophet of honesty” then he should “have spoken up sooner”.
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