PMQs: Boris Johnson pushed to publish scientific advice that supports easing of lockdown

PUBLISHED: 13:20 13 May 2020 | UPDATED: 13:26 13 May 2020

Sir Keir Starmer and prime minister Boris Johnson during a session of PMQs in the House of Commons; Photograph: Parliament TV.

Sir Keir Starmer and prime minister Boris Johnson during a session of PMQs in the House of Commons; Photograph: Parliament TV.

Archant

Boris Johnson has been pressed during Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs) to publish the scientific advice that led to his decisions surrounding the easing of lockdown.

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Taking to the despatch box, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer challenged the prime minister to release Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) advice to the public.

“The prime minister is asking the country to support decisions that affect millions of lives. These are not easy decisions, I recognise that,” Sir Keir said.

“[But] after the confusion of the last few days, gaining pubic confidence in them is crucial. Crucial. The prime minister says his decisions were driven by ‘the science, the data, and public health’.

“So, to give the public confidence in the decision, can the prime minister commit to publishing the scientific advice that the decisions were based on.”

Johnson answered saying that all SAGE advice would be published in “due course” before telling the house that experts had been involved in every step of the government’s response to the virus.

Touching on how the public will view the data, Johnson said: “I think that actually when they look at what we’re advocating as they way forward, the stepped process we have set out, I think people will see exactly what we’re trying to do.”

“The common sense of the British people got us through that first phase of this disease. I am absolutely confident it will get us through the second phase as well.”

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