Speaking to Sky News, Sir David said he was “extremely frustrated” at the Prime Minister’s failure to handle the coronavirus pandemic and stop the spread of the deadly disease after a new variant of the virus was found in the UK. Sir David called on the Government to put the country under lockdown restrictions adding: “We shouldn’t wait for the new strain to spread. The Government doesn’t have the ability to separate those who have the disease from the healthy population.”
He said: “What I’m extremely frustrated about is that right since the beginning, since February, the Government has not handled the disease as we always know we must handle a pandemic or an epidemic, which is separate the people who have the disease from the rest of the population.
“The instrument that we’re using now, the Tier system and the lockdowns is a blunt instrument.
“We are all separated from each other.
“So I’m afraid I don’t hear anyone talk about the test and trace system anymore. We never had it up and running because it was taken out of the public health care system where the specialists are and given to non-specialists health care companies who had no experience in health care at all.
“I would say there was no chance of it ever succeeding.”
Boris Johnson will hold crisis talks with ministers after France banned lorries carrying freight from the UK and countries around the world ended flights amid fears over the new mutant coronavirus strain.
The Prime Minister will chair a meeting of the Government’s Cobra civil contingencies committee on Monday amid warnings of “significant disruption” around the Channel ports in Kent.
Hauliers were urged to stay away from the area amid warnings of potential problems as the end of the Brexit transition period looms on December 31.
Kent Police said they were implementing Operation Stack in a bid to ease potential congestion, while the Department for Transport said Manston Airport was also being prepared as another contingency measure against the anticipated level of disruption.
Countries including France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, Poland, Austria, Denmark, Ireland, and Bulgaria announced restrictions on UK travel following the disclosure that the highly infectious new strain is widespread across south-east England.
More to follow…