Matt Hancock just weaselled his way through Sunday TV

Matt Hancock Twice

Health secretary Matt Hancock did the morning TV rounds on Sunday 16 May. And like the good Tory minister he is, he weaselled his way through most of it.

Hancock’s Half Hour

First up, and Hancock was on Sophy Ridge on Sunday. People are becoming worried about the so-called ‘Indian variant’ of coronavirus (Covid-19). SAGE has warned the variant may be 50% more transmissible than the Kent strain. But the government is still planning on easing lockdown restrictions further on Monday 17 May. So, Ridge put this to Hancock. His response was effectively to shrug his shoulders. Hancock said of the situation:

The thing is, though, Sophy, and I know that you get this; it’s often quite hard to communicate

Clearly, us plebs don’t understand the pandemic in the way Ridge does, then?

Hancock continued:

Epidemiology is all about the balance of risk. And there are no absolutes. … If the transmissibility is as high as that [50%], then we will have a problem – and we’ve been totally frank with people… But it may be that the transmissibility… is much lower. And in that case, there will be almost no impact on our roadmap

He then seemed to cast doubt on whether the government’s ‘roadmap’ out of the pandemic was going to stay on track anyway.  Because Hancock ‘wouldn’t rule out’ local lockdowns if needed.

So, should the public be worried or not? Who knows.

As a final flourish, the health secretary deflected Ridge’s probing about Boris Johnson’s decidedly dodgy finances:

Weaselling on Marr

Then, Hancock slithered over to the BBC for the Andrew Marr Show. Here, he said the Indian variant “does appear to transmit more easily from person to person”:

Also, as the Mirror‘s Pippa Crerar tweeted:

Then, Hancock dodged questions about the scandal over Tory corruption and government contracts. Apparently, when former ministers emailed him begging for government cash, he just “pinged” them on:

He also claimed there was no shortage of PPE during the height of the pandemic. But as one person tweeted, NHS staff who are taking the government to court over a shortage of PPE would disagree:

So, what have we learned from Hancock’s media appearances on 16 May? Very little about whether or not the government has a grip on the pandemic after 14 months But we did learn that the prerequisite to be a Tory minister is the ability to weasel your way through any difficult questions.

Featured image via BBC iPlayer – screengrab and Sky News – screengrab 

Fund our Investigations Unit

You can help us investigate corruption, expose injustice and uncover the truth.

As one of the only independent investigations units in the country, we work for you – but we need your help to keep going. We need to raise £10,000 to continue our groundbreaking investigations. Can you chip in?

The Canary Fund us
  • Show Comments
    1. Ask yourself; When all else changes through time; Why not UK politics…

      Party political groups and their backers have had more than enough time to prove their uselessness toward a wholesome future for all UK citizenry……

      Change Kakistocracy

    2. Matt Hancock just weaselled his way through Sunday TV
      Just this to say on this article Tory party members.
      //
      The New India strain of Virus hitting Lancashire area public need to know how it got here in the first place Hancock-Boris?? Could it be you let them into U.K. form infected area knowing they were carrying a New more dangerous Virus??? why did you let the travellers form other infected area of E.U. and NONE E.U. country into U.K.to infect us??
      //
      You cannot say you did not let them in the environment laws meeting plus
      G7 debates could have been done by Video link instead you invited them you let the representatives into the U.K. ‘possibly ‘knowing they were carrying a new strain of the Virus for political gain only (for voters) over Labour party you all ignored our U.K. peoples safty to all of us.
      //
      So, Hancock -Boris what day in late May 2021 will Tory Govt be Locking -Down all or most areas of Lancashire again and blame the NEW strain from India for more misery in the Lancashire area while LONDON is L-Down free again?

    3. It is time to start voting the mainstream politicians out of office and vote in Independent candidates, former professionals who can actually do the job required, e.g. Accountants in The Treasury, medical staff in The Health Ministry etc. Full and honest accountability and go after those politicians who have used their office for financial gain. Just a thought…

    Leave a Reply

    Join the conversation

    Please read our comment moderation policy here.