UK PM Johnson Eviscerated for Failure to Introduce COVID-19 Restrictions Amid Surge of Infections

© REUTERS / POOLBritain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson holds a news conference in London
Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson holds a news conference in London - Sputnik International, 1920, 05.01.2022
Reports say several individuals in Johnson's cabinet voiced strong opposition to the reimposition of stricter safety rules, while one Tory MP suggested that the prime minister could face a no-confidence vote if the government decides to bring in harsh measures in response to the Omicron strain of COVID-19 that is spreading quickly across the globe.
It seems that in the era of social media the best way to learn the public's opinion about how the government is working is to go to Twitter and judging by what users have been writing about the latest press conference of UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Britons do not approve of his cabinet's policy. Not one bit.

On Tuesday, Mr Johnson voiced hope that England can "ride out" the ongoing surge of infections, but didn't introduce new COVID-19 restrictions to the current Plan B, despite the country witnessing the highest number of cases since the start of the pandemic (218,724).

Although medical experts, including those advising the government, advocated for stricter safety rules Boris Johnson has insisted that high vaccination rates and compliance with existing guidelines will give England a chance to "find a way to live with this virus" without shutting down economic and social life.

His speech has been harshly criticised online, with netizens berating the PM and his cabinet.

Many users accused the British authorities of double standards…

…while others suggested that the government does not care about the public and those on the front line of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Johnson's remark about the creation of 250,000 virtual hospital beds sparked an even bigger torrent of vitriolic comments.

Many users pointed to the conflicting statements made by authorities, specifically the remark made by England's Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty, who contradicted Johnson's statements that the Omicron strain of COVID-19 is milder compared to other variants.

Still others made fun of Johnson's pauses during the speech and compared it to a scene from the sitcom "Yes, Minister".

Although the prime minister did not announce any new COVID-19 restrictions, he didn't rule out the government doing so if the number of hospitalisations and deaths keep increasing. At the end of December, the UK media reported that Johnson faced opposition from ministers and MPs regarding the introduction of restrictions

Currently England is under the so-called Plan B set of rules, which requests people to wear masks in most indoor public venues, shops, and transport, and COVID-19 passes for big events and work from home.
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