MATT HANCOCK RESPONDS TO LEAKED MESSAGES – Thousands Of Whatsapp Messages Sent During the height of Lockdowns

Former health secretary Matt Hancock has issued a lengthy statement after the leaking of thousands of WhatsApp messages that were sent and received during the height of the COVID pandemic.

Matt Hancock has denounced what he said was a “massive betrayal and breach of trust” following the leaking of lockdown WhatsApp messages.

The exchanges were published in a UK broadsheet, after he shared them with journalist Isabel Oakeshott, who worked with the former health secretary on his Pandemic Diaries book.

In a lengthy statement, Mr Hancock denied sending a “menacing message” to Ms Oakeshott after the publication of the first stories on Wednesday – a claim she made last night as she defended breaking a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) to leak the messages.

Despite public interest in this case the former Health minister said, “There is absolutely no public interest case for this huge breach. All the materials for the book have already been made available to the inquiry, which is the right, and only, place for everything to be considered properly and the right lessons to be learned. As we have seen, releasing them in this way gives a partial, biassed account to suit an anti-lockdown agenda.”

Last night, Ms Oakeshott insisted she released the messages because of the “overwhelming” public interest and it was not about attacking the former health secretary.