Boris Johnson is “the worst PM” and must resign soon, Alastair Campbell has suggested in an article savaging the prime minister’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
Campbell, The New European‘s editor-at-large and former Downing Street director of communications, said it was “hard to overstate the scale of the catastrophe” over which Johnson presides.
In an opinion piece for The Mirror, Campbell said Johnson and his cabinet held responsibility “for many of” the 100,000 coronavirus deaths in the UK.
He also attacked prime minister for saying he had done “everything possible” to limit deaths and suffering caused by the virus.
“Well, no, Mr Johnson, you did not,” the former director of communication wrote. “You did not take it seriously when the virus developed, because you were too busy ‘celebrating’ Brexit, and sorting your private life.
“You got ill because you didn’t take it seriously. You couldn’t be bothered to chair crisis meetings. You boasted about shaking hands when told not to.
“You claimed British exceptionalism would see us through without lockdown. You encouraged the country to go racing for what turned out to be a super-spreader event.”
Campbell claimed the prime minister acted “too slow” to implement a lockdown, the wearing of masks, the timely delivery of Personal Protective Equipment and containing the virus at Britain’s borders before turning to Johnson’s actions before Christmas.
“You were so keen for a few ‘Boris saves Christmas’ headlines that you put the health of the nation at risk once more, despite this time knowing all the risks.
“Now you say you’re sorry, and you say you take responsibility.
“What does that even mean when you continue to claim you did ‘everything possible’ to protect the health of the nation and continue, as at Prime Minister’s Questions today, to present the government handling of the crisis as a success story.
“It is like watching the manager of Accrington Stanley tell us how he masterminded triumph in the Champions League.”
Reflecting on Johnson’s overall response, Campbell added: “Johnson has faced an enormous challenge. But by any reckoning he has failed to meet it, and there is little sign he has learned the lessons of that failure.
“We have the worst possible Cabinet at the worst possible time.
“The worst possible prime minister at the worst possible time.
“If Johnson had an ounce of integrity, honesty, and self-awareness, he would go.
“The worst death toll in the world is reason enough, but there are plenty more, and they all flow from one inescapable fact – He. Just. Cannot. Do. It.”