The public want answers and serious leadership

Mohammad Yasin MP

Following today’s PMQs, the Labour leader Keir Starmer has written to the Prime Minister about inaccurate comments he made in the House on Government guidance regarding care homes.

He is asking the Prime Minister to come to the Commons to correct the record.

At PMQs Boris Johnson claimed that Keir Starmer was wrong to say that government advice was saying until 12 March that people in care homes were at little risk of coronavirus. But Keir was not wrong.

Boris Johnson continued to deny the Government’s own advice on care homes as Keir then pressed him over 10,000 extra unexplained deaths.

ONS records reveal the average number of deaths in care homes each month. For the last five years, the average for April has been just over 8,000.

But this year, the number of deaths in care homes in April was a staggering 26,000. That’s three times the average, 18,000 additional deaths this April.

Using the Government’s figures, only 8,000 are recorded as Covid-19 deaths, that leaves 10,000 additional and unexplained care home deaths this April.

Leadership, transparency, honesty and accountability are the watchwords for dealing with a public health crisis, but we are getting none of these things from the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister says that solving the problem in care homes is crucial, but that can only happen if the data is clear, the numbers are understood. Only then can we learn how to prevent further deaths.

Today showed another powerful forensic assault on the Prime Minister by the Labour leader whose important questions on care homes and international death comparisons went largely unanswered once again.

The lesson for Boris Johnson is the public want answers and serious leadership. The Prime Minister can no longer wing it at PMQs and hide behind his usual bluff and bluster.

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