Boris Johnson made the eyebrow-raising claim despite the move being suggested by SAGE scientists, doctors and NHS chiefs.
Image: POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Boris Johnson has bizarrely claimed “absolutely everybody” except Labour backs his refusal to trigger Covid Plan B.
The Prime Minister made the eyebrow-raising claim despite the move being suggested by SAGE scientists, doctors and NHS chiefs.
The NHS Confederation said barely a week ago: “The government ought to not just announce that we’re moving to Plan B, but it should be Plan B plus.”
The British Medical Association said the “time is now” for Plan B, which involved mandatory masks, vaccine passports and more working from home.
And SAGE warned “earlier intervention would reduce the need for more stringent, disruptive, and longer-lasting measures”.
Yet the Prime Minister told journalists at the G20 summit in Rome: “Yes it’s true that cases are high, but they do not currently constitute any reason to move to Plan B.
“And that’s I think agreed amongst absolutely everybody except I think possibly the Labour Party of last week, whenever it was.
“But never mind.”
It came as Mr Johnson promised revellers they could enjoy Christmas as normal this year – exactly what he said last year before banning indoor socialising.
One in 50 people in England had Covid in latest figures – the same as before lockdown in January.
The PM was asked if he could guarantee everyone a great Christmas as he flew to the G20 summit in Rome.
He replied: ”I see no evidence whatever to think that any kind of lockdown is on the cards.”
Asked if people would get a proper break he replied: “Get the holiday we need? Yeah, I do think so, yes.”
He hesitated as he hinted Brits are not totally out of the woods – and he could implement his Plan B at some point.
“In terms of the restrictions, I think… We’re watching the numbers every day,” he said.
But he went on: “We’re sticking with the plan.
“And I think rather than thinking of new restrictions the best thing everybody can do is get that booster jab as soon as you’re offered it.”
Labour called for Plan B to be activated last weekend after the Tories accused the party of flip-flopping on the issue.
Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves told BBC One’s Andrew Marr Show: “I think the first thing is the government have got to do more to make Plan A work.
“If the scientists are saying work from home and masks, we should do that. So get A working better because the vaccination programme has been stalling, and introduce those parts of Plan B.
“But there are also things not in A or B that need to be done, like paying statutory sick pay from day one and also better ventilation in public spaces.”
Asked whether Plan B should be introduced now, she said: “Yes, but let’s not let the government off the hook with Plan A either.”