Lockdown affair in Britain: Johnson defends his adviser

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Premier Johnson’s close adviser Dominic Cummings is under increasing pressure because he drove to Durham during the lockdown.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has defended his controversial chief adviser in the affair of alleged lockdown violations. After an in-depth conversation with Cummings, he concluded that Dominic Cummings “followed every father’s instincts,” Johnson said at a press conference on Sunday.

Cummings acted “in all respects, legally and with integrity,” said the head of government. According to opposition politicians, a member of Johnson’s Conservative Party Cummings has already called for resignation today. It is unacceptable that the government is losing so much political capital, Steve Baker wrote on Twitter on Sunday. “Dominic Cummings has to go,” he said.

The campaign strategist is accused of having circumvented the exit restrictions to curb the coronavirus pandemic by traveling from London to his parents in Durham, around 430 kilometers away, at the end of March. According to recent reports, he even went there at least twice. The government denies that.

Dominic CummingsAPA / AFP / ISABEL INFANTES

Cummings said on Saturday that he had acted lawfully when he drove around 400 kilometers through England to his family in Durham with his wife, who had Covid-19, and his four-year-old son. Johnson’s office said that Cummings had acted in accordance with the Corona rules and wanted to take care of his son’s care in the face of his wife’s illness. Cummings had organized the UK exit campaign before the 2016 Brexit referendum.

“Acted sensibly and legally”

The debate had dominated news events in the country over the weekend. Cummings insisted that he acted “reasonably and legally”.

He wanted to ensure the care for his son because his wife had contracted Covid-19 and he also had to count on being infected himself. He fell ill shortly after his arrival in Durham. According to government guidelines, travel was only allowed for compelling reasons at this time.

Traveled to Durham often?

According to the latest newspaper reports, Cummings was also seen in Durham on April 19. At this point he had already resumed work in London after recovering from Covid 19 disease. On April 12, he was allegedly recognized by a passerby. This time at a popular destination, just under 50 kilometers from Durham. If the reports turn out to be true, Cummings should have driven to Durham at least a second time during the lockdown. A government spokeswoman denied the allegations in the evening as “false”.

Cummings denies that his family was contacted by the police while in Durham. However, the police disagreed with this presentation on Saturday evening. A statement said that Cummings’ father was contacted by a police officer on April 1 about his son’s presence after receiving a notice.

(APA / dpa)

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