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UK health chief defends virus record after Cummings attack


The UK’s health minister has defended dealing with the coronovirus epidemic following allegations by a former top government aide that the government’s failed response has resulted in thousands of unnecessary deaths.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock retaliated after being thrown out for criticism in a provocative attack on the government by Dominic Cummings.

In testimony by lawmakers on Wednesday, Cummings accused Hancock of lying to the public, saying he “should be fired” for mistakes, including test failures in which virus patients were discharged from hospitals to nursing homes. Thousands of people with COVID-19 died in British care homes in the first months of the outbreak.

“The baseless allegations about honesty are not true,” Hancock said.

In the House of Commons, he told legislators, “I have been directly with the public, both privately and privately.” “Every day since I started working on the response to this epidemic last January, I woke up every morning and asked: ‘What should I do to protect life?”

Cummings, who quit his job as Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s top adviser in November, claimed the government’s slow and chaotic initial response, and Johnson’s failure to learn from his mistakes meant thousands died unnecessarily.

He said Johnson was “unfit for the job” of the Prime Minister.

Opposition Labor Party health spokesman Jonathan Ashworth said the government has questions to answer as to whether Cummings’ allegations were true.

“Cummings’s allegations are either correct, and if so, the Secretary of State (Hancock) stands potentially in violation of the Ministerial Code… he said.” Whose is it? “

The UK has recorded around 128,000 coronovirus deaths, the highest toll in Europe, and has experienced one of the world’s deepest recessions in 2020 as three consecutive lockdowns hit the economy.

The government says it will launch an independent public inquiry to deal with the epidemic within the next year. Opposition politicians, and families who have lost loved ones to COVID-19, want it to start as soon as possible.

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