Health Secretary Matt Hancock wouldn’t dare lie to the public that patients were being tested for coronavirus before returning to care homes, a Tory MP has said, claiming he “sh**s at his own shadow”.
Former-No10 adviser Dominic Cummings said Hancock should have been sacked for misinforming the public with many people dying at care homes in March and April last year who brought the virus back with them from hospitals.
Cummings told MPs last Wednesday: “We were told categorically in March that people would be tested before they went back to care homes. We only subsequently found out that that hadn’t happened.
“The government rhetoric was we put a shield around care homes – it was complete nonsense”.
His comments have been followed by the Tories dropping six points in an opinion poll on Saturday.
But Hancock still retains the backing of some members of the Tory party who do not agree with Cummings’ assessment that he lied to the prime minister.
One Tory MP said: “He wouldn’t dare go on telly to promise what he thought he couldn’t deliver.
“Matt is the kind of guy who sh**s at his own shadow.”
It comes as a Downing Street eyewitness has alleged that Hancock told the prime minister that protective clothing was on its way for thousands of NHS staff in March 2020, when he knew it wasn’t.
It is claimed by the Sunday Mirror source that he lied about a shipment of badly needed masks and gowns that were supposed to be coming from China saying it had been “sorted and there was no problem”.
The insider also claims Hancock and NHS boss Sir Simon Stevens were in chaos.
An emergency No10 unit under former Vote Leave head of research Oliver Lewis had to be set up to identify those most likely to die so they could receive food parcels while isolating.
But the NHS data it started out with was so inadequate that numbers rocketed 600,000 from the initial 900,000 in 72 hours. The source revealed: “The whole system was absolutely appalling.”
A government spokesperson rejected the claim, saying: “Our quick action on food parcels meant we were able to provide vital food and medicine to over 1.8 million vulnerable people.”
He added that 4.7 million free boxes of food were delivered in the four months up to 31 July.