The latest Downing Street Christmas party development has been called a “bullet to the chest” of families who have lost loved ones during the pandemic.
Dr Saleyha Ahsan, from the Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice, told BBC Breakfast this morning the saga was “an example of how the Government have run this from the start: One rule for them and the rest of us have to adhere to different rules.”
Dr Ahsan, who said she had been working in north Wales at the time of the mock press conference, said: “Numerous people around the country couldn’t spend those precious last few days, hours, minutes with loved ones. It was heartbreaking. In 14 years in the NHS I’ve never seen anything like it.
“And this latest revelation is just a bullet to the chest, it really is.
“It just demonstrates the lack of regard for the rest of us.”Dr Ahsan
Dr Ahsan said the saga showed why an independent inquiry into the handling of the pandemic was needed “now”.
Health Secretary Sajid Javid pulled out of a key broadcast interview following the emergence of leaked footage showing Government aides joking about a festive gathering last year.
In footage obtained by ITV News and released on Tuesday, the Prime Minister’s then-press secretary Allegra Stratton and adviser Ed Oldfield, along with other aides, were filmed laughing about a “fictional” Downing Street party in December 2020.
BBC Radio 4’s Today programme said Mr Javid was scheduled to feature on Wednesday morning, but cancelled after the footage emerged.
Presenter Nick Robinson said: “We were expecting to speak to the Health Secretary Sajid Javid this morning but we were told just a few minutes after that video emerged that no minister would be available to speak on the programme today.”