PM must take responsibility for Indian variant failure

Responding to the prime minister’s press conference today on the Indian variant, Layla Moran MP, Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Coronavirus, said:

Responding to the prime minister’s press conference today on the Indian variant, Layla Moran MP, Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Coronavirus, said:

“Boris Johnson must take responsibility for the failure to prevent the Indian variant taking root in the UK. Once again the government acted too late, and the country is sadly paying the price.

“Urgent action is now needed to help local authorities contain local surges, including by improving the failing Test, Trace and Isolate system and providing proper financial support for those self-isolating.

The government must listen to the advice of their own scientists, who are warning that we could face another deadly wave once restrictions are lifted on Monday.

“Ministers must also prevent this happening again by fixing their flawed border policy and discouraging all non-essential overseas travel, as the Welsh government has done."

ENDS

Press contact: Paul Haydon, [email protected] , 07988395025

Notes to Editors

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on coronavirus is conducting a cross-party parliamentary inquiry into the government’s handling of the pandemic and has so far held over 20 hearings and made over 40 recommendations.

The latest SAGE minutes for 13 May state that: "If this variant were to have a 40-50% transmission advantage nationally compared to B.1.1.7, sensitivity analyses in the modelling of the roadmap in England (SAGE 88) indicate that it is likely that progressing with step 3 alone (with no other local, regional, or national changes to measures) would lead to a substantial resurgence of hospitalisations (similar to, or larger than, previous peaks). Progressing with both steps 3 and 4 at the earliest dates could lead to a much larger peak. Smaller transmission advantage would lead to smaller peaks."

The APPG published a cross-party report on 3 May 2021 calling for stricter curbs on international to prevent Covid variants entering the UK. The report recommended that: "The UK government should not delay the addition of countries to the ‘red list’. Both where ‘variants under investigation’ and ‘variants of concern’ are identified, countries with such variants should be added to the ‘red list’ and quarantine rules should come into force with immediate effect."