London Daily

London Daily News
Saturday, Jan 16, 2021

Ministers worried Chris Whitty 'will resign if his lockdown plan is ignored'

Ministers worried Chris Whitty 'will resign if his lockdown plan is ignored'

Ministers are reportedly concerned that Chris Witty could quit and speak out if his advice on a second lockdown is ignored.
The Government is facing crisis talks over how to control a surge in cases, while minimising the wider effect on the economy.

But some ministers have been accused of being ‘in the grip’ of the Chief Medical Officer.

One source told the Daily Mail: ‘[Whitty] only has a medical brief so he doesn’t really consider economic factors. He is very well regarded and there is a fear that if the Government defied his instructions or advice, he would make that known.’

However, a Department of Health spokesman denied the claims, saying: ‘The claim that the Chief Medical Officer has threatened to resign at any point is categorically not true.’

As the Health Secretary Matt Hancock braces the country for more lockdown restrictions to deal with a spike in new cases, Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Business Secretary Alok Sharma are fighting to protect the economy.

Another senior conservative told the Mail: ‘If you speak to the Treasury, people are tearing their hair out.

‘The main problem is we are being driven by an enormous amount of panic by scientists and doctors. Why aren’t we reporting the extra deaths from stroke and heart disease caused by people being afraid of going to hospital?

‘Scientists never concern themselves about the economy. The Government has to stand up to them. But the whole Health department is in their grip.’

Some sources say Prof Whitty ‘has to be listened to’ as his loss will affect the Government’s credibility on coronavirus.

With cases rising across the country, Mr Hancock said there was a danger the numbers could ‘shoot through the roof’ unless effective action was taken to halt the spread of the virus.

His warning came as the Government announced anyone in England who refuses an order to self-isolate could face a fine of up to £10,000.

The Health Secretary said that hospital admissions for the disease were doubling ‘every eight days’ and would be followed by an increase in the number of deaths. ‘This country faces a tipping point,’ he told BBC1’s The Andrew Marr Show.

‘If everybody follows the rules – and we will be increasingly stringent on the people who are not following the rules – then we can avoid further national lockdowns.

‘But we of course have to be prepared to take action if that’s what’s necessary.’

Quote of the Day

He knows nothing and thinks he knows everything. That points clearly to a political career.

George Bernard Shaw
Related Articles

London Daily