Hancock WhatsApps: he hid the life-threatening danger of ‘Eat Out to Help Out’

After he served up this little howler – and pushed up Covid-19 infections massively, Rishi Sunak became prime minister. Shouldn’t he – along with Matt Hancock and then-Cabinet Secretary Simon Case – be facing punishment for endangering the lives of many thousands of people?

Eat Out to Die Out, I called it.

The scheme by Rishi Sunak was introduced in July 2020 to get people to eat out. It provided vouchers supporting half the price of the meal – and was initially criticised because many people did not have enough spare cash to support paying for the other half.

But worse was to come when research by the University of Warwick published in December that year showed that the initiative was likely to blame for 17 per cent of infections – one in six outbreaks – between August and early September.

And now we know that Matt Hancock – Health Secretary at the time – knew about it and conspired with then-Cabinet Secretary Simon Case, and Sunak (who is now prime minister, remember) to hide it from us.

Because these then-ministers – and the then-Cabinet Secretary – hid the evidence, Eat Out To Help Out continued for several months and was only shown to have spread the virus much later, when it was too late to do anything about it.

Look at his WhatsApp messages from the summer of 2020:

News outlets like The Independent are reporting that Hancock ridiculed the scheme, calling it “Eat Out to Help The Virus Get About”.

Clearly the scheme should have been halted as soon as the concerns became apparent to Hancock. Instead he made a bad joke about it.

Who knows how many people died because they weren’t told about the danger? And shouldn’t Hancock, Case and Sunak be punished for allowing those deaths to happen?

Quick footnote: the BBC’s big story about the Hancock WhatsApps today is all about his reaction to the publication of a photo showing him kissing then-aide Gina Coladangelo.

Don’t we deserve better service from our public-service news provider? Is it because the BBC’s Chairman, Richard Sharp, is a Tory and a friend to Tories?

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  1. clove888 March 4, 2023 at 2:07 pm - Reply

    So let me get this straight. These people were killing people and deliberately covering it up. As the leader of the opposition, was Keir Starmer opposing any of it? We were at the hands of the worst type of people at our worst time in history.

  2. Hecuba March 4, 2023 at 6:16 pm - Reply

    Matt Hancock, Simon Case and Rishi Sunak are all guilty of corporate manslaughter because they all colluded in denying/hiding the fact Sunak’s stupid scheme ‘eat out to help out’ was causing severe transmission of the coronavirus! This is why there was a spike in the number of women and men contracting coronavirus because the fascist tories as usual didn’t and still don’t care about us plebs!!

    Yet these boys have the audacity to claim they are the ‘goverment’ with responsibility for ensuring us plebs health and safety!!! Well done fascist tories for murdering more than 200,000 women, children and men! Meanwhile puppet BBC journalists continue to hide fascist tory accountability!

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