Boris Johnson Reportedly Delayed Lockdown Because ‘COVID Only Killing 80-Year-Olds’, Dominic Cummings Will Allege

by : Emily Brown on :
Boris Johnson Reportedly Delayed Lockdown Because 'COVID Only Killing 80-Year-Olds', Dominic Cummings Will AllegePA

Dominic Cummings is reportedly planning to tell MPs on the combined Health and Science committees that Boris Johnson delayed lockdown in autumn because he said ‘COVID is only killing 80-year-olds.’

Johnson’s former chief advisor is set to give testimony on the government’s handling of coronavirus to senior MPs on two parliamentary select committees today, May 26.


It’s thought Cummings will not hold back when it comes to sharing his beliefs about the prime minister, ministers, government scientific advisers and civil servants, despite the fact the government made efforts to protect Cummings for his controversial trips to Durham and Barnard Castle during the first national lockdown.

Dominic Cummings (PA Images)PA Images

According to ITV News’ Robert Peston, Cummings will allege Johnson made the comment about coronavirus ‘only killing 80-year-olds’ when he rejected a ‘circuit-breaker’ lockdown in September, and that the PM insisted he wouldn’t repeat what he viewed as a mistake when being pressured over the possible collapse of the NHS in March.

Johnson is also alleged to have said: ‘I’m going to be the mayor of Jaws, like I should have been in March.’


Cummings is also expected to accuse the prime minister of referring to coronavirus as ‘kung-flu’ and to have expressed willingness to be infected with the virus live on television before he contracted the disease.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson (PA Images)PA Images

Downing Street has not denied the latter claim, The Guardian reports, with a spokesperson instead drawing focus back to the virus itself and the roadmap out of the pandemic.

They commented:


We are entirely focused on recovering from the pandemic, moving through the roadmap and distributing vaccines while delivering on the public’s priorities.

Throughout this pandemic, the government’s priority has been to save lives, protect the NHS and support people’s jobs and livelihoods across the United Kingdom.


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Ahead of his appearance in front of the Health and Science committees, Cummings has been using social media to criticise the government’s handling of the virus, claiming this week that it had failed to protect those in care homes and other social care, and vulnerable people who had been asked to shield.

As part of a lengthy Twitter thread, he wrote:


One of the worst failings in Feb/March, less discussed than lockdown, was the almost total absence of a serious plan for shielding/social care.

As in general, there was widespread delusion we HAD a great plan. It turned out to barely exist.

During his testimony Cummings will also face questions about whether Johnson said he would rather ‘let the bodies pile high in their thousands’ than impose another lockdown; a comment Downing Street has denied.

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Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.

Topics: News, Boris Johnson, Coronavirus, COVID-19, Dominic Cummings, government, lockdown, NHS, Now, UK


ITV News
  1. ITV News

    Dominic Cummings will allege Boris Johnson said 'Covid is only killing 80-year-olds'