Foreign secretary Dominic Raab has insisted he did not know the whereabouts of Boris Johnson’s senior adviser while he stood in for the prime minister.
Raab said when Johnson was taken into hospital with Covid-19 and he was left in charge, all he knew was that Dominic Cummings ‘was out of action because he had come down with coronavirus’.
He added that he ‘was not focused on his movements at all’ and ‘wasn’t aware of them’.
Asked when he found out Cummings had left London and travelled to Durham, Raab told Sky’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday: ‘I’m not sure. But to be honest with you, when the story broke was when I first became aware of the detail of it.
‘I just knew that he was out of action because he had come down with coronavirus and, given the situation we were in with the prime minister taken ill, and very seriously ill as it later emerged, I was just focused with the government and with a great cabinet team on making sure we continued to focus relentlessly on dealing with the virus.
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‘I mean I knew Dom was unwell and he was out of action, and obviously I wanted him and the prime minister to get well soon, but I wasn’t focused on his movements at all and I wasn’t aware of them.’
It emerged last weekend that in March, Cummings drove from his London home to his parents’ farm in County Durham with his wife – who had coronavirus symptoms – and his son.