GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS SET COVID WHATSAPP MESSAGES TO DISAPPEAR – Ex-UK official says he can only speculate as to why he did it…
A senior British official who worked directly with former Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he could only “speculate” as to why he turned on the disappearing messages function on WhatsApp during the coronavirus pandemic.
He, remember, was the civil servant who sent the infamous “bring your own booze” email about a lockdown gathering.
In a remarkably unbelievable statement, Martin Reynolds, who acted as Johnson’s principal private secretary between 2019 and 2022, made the comment while giving evidence to Britain’s public inquiry on government decision-making regarding COVID-19.
Responding to questions from the inquiry’s lead counsel, Martin Keith, Reynolds said that he had used a group chat on the WhatsApp messaging service to keep Johnson updated on daily events and decisions, but had not himself been involved in government policy using “ephemeral” communications such as WhatsApp..
He told the inquiry he could not recall why he turned on the app’s disappearing message function (a function that deletes old messages), but that he would not have done so to obscure evidence from a future public inquiry.
Before leaving office, Johnson ordered the inquiry to look into the United Kingdom’s preparedness and its public health and economic response after Britain recorded one of the world’s highest death tolls from COVID.
In an abysmal failure of Government policy being guided by poor quality worst-case scenario planning and poor scientific advice, more than 175,000 deaths from the virus had been reported by the time Johnson stood down in July 2022. Far worse than Sweden, a nation that stood alone in the world, which refused to mandate vaccines or masks and simply requested people to take sensible precautions.
Let’s hear what the minister actually said.