UK's Boris Johnson Moves to Revive ‘BoJo Mojo’ With Pledge to Lift Lockdown Early

© REUTERS / TOM NICHOLSON / British PM Johnson welcomes Lithuanian PM Simonyte in LondonBritish PM Johnson welcomes Lithuanian PM Simonyte in London
British PM Johnson welcomes Lithuanian PM Simonyte in London - Sputnik International, 1920, 09.02.2022
Embattled UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has faced calls from some of his own MPs to resign after a series of scandals. But an ill-timed defection of one rebel to the opposition Labour Party and concessions to rebel backbenchers may yet save his bacon.
British PM Boris Johnson has made his boldest bid yet to revive his notorious 'BoJo Mojo' — pledging to lift the last COVID-19 restrictions before spring.
Speaking in the House of Commons on Wednesday just before the weekly rough-and-tumble of Prime Minister's Questions, the PM said he would make an announcement after the week-long Parliamentary recess for school half-term in late February.

"Provided the current encouraging trends in the data continue, it is my expectation that we will be able to end the last domestic restrictions, including the legal requirement to self isolate if you test positive, a full month early," Johnson said, to cheers from the government benches.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid boasted in a tweet that the end of special rules should be considered a vindication for government pandemic policy.
"We are the freest country in Europe thanks to the strong defences we have built," Javid tweeted, adding, "We’re learning to live with COVID."
The move, following a Tuesday mini-reshuffle, will reportedly appease restless Tory backbenchers, almost 100 of whom rebelled on the last vote for increased restrictions in December 2021, including mask-wearing, working from home and controversial vaccine passes for large public venues and events.
A total of 15 publicly called for Johnson to resign over the 'Partygate' affair, although only nine are known to have written to Sir Graham Brady, chair of the powerful backbench 1922 Committee, requesting a vote of no confidence in the prime minister. Bury South MP Christian Wakeford also sent a letter — hours before annulling it by defecting to the opposition Labour benches.
"The PM's plan to end all Covid restrictions a month early is the right thing to do and is extremely welcome," tweeted Lord David Frost, who brought forward his resignation from cabinet in December 2021 in protest of heightened restrictions. "I hope the government will also make clear we will not go down the road of coercive lockdowns ever again."
And Wycombe MP Steve Baker, deputy chairman of the backbench COVID Recovery Group, pointed to recent research that indicated compulsory lockdown measures made only a small difference in preventing potential COVID deaths, in comparison to voluntary actions by the public.
"The public can be trusted to make the right decisions for themselves and families," Baker tweeted. "All lockdowns must be off the table for good."
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson leaves 10 Downing Street in London, Britain, February 9, 2022 - Sputnik International, 1920, 09.02.2022
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But conservative commentator Calvin Robinson said Johnson had only made the concession thanks to the Tory rebels, tweeting: "Keep this pressure up, it is working."
Figures in the hospitality business who opposed lockdown measures also welcomed the PM's pledge.
"In many ways this is what we’ve all been demanding for a long time!" tweeted Alan Miller, co-founder of the Open For All campaign. "But there should be NO distinction for travel for unvaccinated NOR any legacy of mandate," he stated.
Outspoken Essex publican Adam Brooks said Johnson's move was cause for celebration — presumably down the pub.
"Science backs it up and it will get him that poll bounce he needs," Brooks tweeted. "Maybe the Government advisers are starting to listen to what the people want."
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