Boris Johnson is struggling to contain a Tory revolt as there is much fury in Parliament over the “non sensical” new Covid restrictions along with the Prime Minister’s handling of the Christmas party saga.
On Monday evening Johnson told people to work from home where they can as he triggered Plan B measures to curb the spread of the highly transmissible Omicron variant.
However more than 20 million people across the UK are now less likely to follow the governments Covid rules as a result of there being at least seven Christmas parties being held at Downing Street last year during the lockdown.
Former chief whip Mark Harper said in the Commons on Monday evening said, “Why should people at home, listening to the Prime Minister and the Health Secretary, do things that people working in No10 are not prepared to do?”
Harper told MPs in the Commons that Omicron has yet to hospitalise a single person in the UK, which simply “doesn’t support the introduction of these measures.”
He told MPs, “Over the past couple of weeks the Government’s credibility, whether it’s on Paterson or on the Christmas parties, has taken a hit.”
William Wragg, Tory chairman of the Commons public administration committee, called Johnson’s move on Plan B, a “diversionary tactic.”
Other MPs asked in the Commons how can the government expect the public to abide by Covid rules when No10 staff were accused of recklessly breaking them.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said Johnson’s apology “raises more questions than answers’ because he had been ‘caught red-handed.”
He added, “Millions of people now think the Prime Minister was taking them for fools, that they were lied to.”
It appeared last night that Professor Whitty and Sir Patrick Vallance, the chief scientist, took a swipe at No 10’s conduct during the press conference, and were imploring people to follow the new restrictions.
Sir Patrick said, “The rules are quite carefully thought through … and they’re there for everybody to stick to.”
Professor Whitty added, “We all know that people get very angry, including colleagues and friends, when they feel that it’s unfair.”
In response to ‘Plan B’ a significant three in ten of the public have said they are now less likely to follow the government’s Covid rules as a result of the breaking news of parties last year during lockdown.