Covid-19 in the UK: Who is at fault?

Photo by Tobias Rehbein on

The news that almost 20,000 people could have been saved if we had entered into lockdown 1 week earlier should be met with indignation.

Indignation directed straight towards Boris Johnson, who could have prevented countless deaths. Not only have they failed the 20,000 individuals who died as a result of Covid-19 but also each and every loved one currently mourning.

We cannot change history, but we can demand answers and clarity. Each decision and every logistic needs to be made open to the British public.

It says an awful lot about a country when its prime minister openly states “we can expect to lose loved ones before their time” yet makes no public attempt to prevent the cause.  It says even more when that same individual, who directly ignores the social distance recommendations given by commended scientist and ‘The World Health Organisation’, boasts about shaking the hand of each and every person on a hospital visit – “even those with suspected Covid-19”.

Where other countries locked down forcefully, our prime minister suggested the UK would be better suited for herd immunity. A strategy met by scientists with shock and horror, the majority of whom pointed out the dangers it would impose to high risk individuals.

It was perhaps this notion of herd immunity that made the prime minister lock down well after Covid-19 had rampaged its way across the UK.

The prime minister is meant to not only guide the country but to protect it. These actions do not appear to come from the mind of someone looking to protect the British public.

Amongst the lockdown and search for answers, many are shouting back. Cries of “it is nobody’s fault”, “he’s doing the best he can”, “We shouldn’t politicise the pandemic” rampage across social media sites.

Photo by Anna Shvets on

Unfortunately, though, it is political. Had another party been at the UK’s helm, perhaps fewer people would have been forced to suffer. Perhaps we would have joined the EU’s PPE scheme, can you imagine what kind of difference that would have made? Could our frontline NHS staff have been saved?

When we look towards New Zealand, Australia and Germany we discover that the death count could have been much lower; especially when lockdown is implemented swiftly and fiercely.

So yes, somebody is at fault and no -at the cost of thousands of lives- they have not done their best. Although Boris’ ego can certainly be commended, his decision making and leadership ability cannot.  

Unless the process of each decision is laid out clearly to the public, condemnation and frustration will continue to grow. The British people want answers and rightly so.

Photo credit: Alice Moulding @

Published by IDLE

Journalism and Media MA student at Newcastle University. Avid writer and journalist. Currently reporting for Jesmond Local.

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