Boris Johnson to avoid journalists over lockdown announcement to take pre-recorded questions from public
- Credit: PA
Boris Johnson is to avoid questions from journalists over his announcement surrounding the easing of the coronavirus lockdown, instead opting to take pre-recorded questions from the public.
The government has been accused of 'mixed messages' after Johnson addressed the nation on Sunday evening to offer his 'first sketch of a road map' for restarting the economy and social lives in England.
In a broadcast from Downing Street, the PM said a phased reopening of schools and non-essential shops in England could potentially begin from June 1 if transmission can be reduced.
And he said people who cannot work from home should be 'actively encouraged' to return to their jobs from Monday, and he granted unlimited exercise in England from Wednesday.
He relaxed his 'stay home' slogan to instead tell people to 'stay alert', but had not consulted the leaders of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland - and they refused to adopt the new message.
You may also want to watch:
The government is set to publish a 50-page document in parliament on Monday to fill in the gaps from his announcement, and Johnson shortly after will face MPs while giving a statement in the House of Commons.
It will be his first statement to politicians on Covid-19.
- 1 These are the 322 Tory MPs who voted against extending free school meals to children
- 2 Priti Patel set to hand private firms £28 million in government contracts to deport asylum seekers from UK
- 3 Betty Boothroyd delivers scathing assessment of Boris Johnson's government
- 4 Michael Gove's Brexit fantasy is leading us down a perilous path
- 5 Boris Johnson 'plans to resign' in six months because he can't live on £150k salary
- 6 Brexit shambles: A stress of our own making
- 7 WILL SELF: Two places where everyone knows your name
- 8 German MEP tells Boris Johnson he 'owes' Britons a Brexit deal as she urged a return to EU trade talks
- 9 Question Time: Ex-Tory minister accused of making 'sickening' comment about free schools meals row
- 10 How the Daily Star became Boris Johnson's biggest critic
Shortly after he wil answer questions in front of the cameras at a Downing Street briefing.
But rather than take them from journalists on Monday afternoon the prime minister will opt for questions from the public.
Taking to social media, he wrote on Twitter: 'Do you want to ask me a question tomorrow? If so, you can submit yours here: https://gov.uk/ask'.
The website he links to reads: 'Submit a question for the daily coronavirus (COVID-19) press conference. If your question is chosen, a cabinet minister will answer it during the live broadcast.'
Such questions are typically selected and recorded in advance, but Downing Street has insisted that ministers are not involved in choosing what is asked, or will be told what they will be.
It means Johnson will avoid further scrutiny from journalists, having refused to give a press conference or media interview for 11 days, and having held just one press conference since March 25th.
Last month Downing Street was accused of barring the newspaper behind the most prominent criticisms of the government's approach to coronavirus from asking questions during daily press briefings.
Become a Supporter
The New European is proud of its journalism and we hope you are proud of it too. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.