Former AM questions claims Johnson allegedly ‘missed’ Covid meetings to write Shakespeare biography
A former Assembly Member has highlighted claims that Boris Johnson “missed” Covid meetings because he was allegedly writing his biography of Shakespeare.
The story which appeared in today’s Sunday Times fears the prime minister’s former senior adviser Dominic Cummings will say that Johnson missed “five Cobra emergency meetings” because of he was writing his book.
Cummings, who departed in December, will appear before a joint inquiry being conducted by MPs on the Commons’ health select committee and the science and technology committee next Wednesday.
The Sunday Times story states: “Officals in the Cabinet Office are also concerned that Cummings will accuse Johnson of missing key meetings on the crisis because he was working on a biography of Shakespeare, the money from which he needed to fund his divorce from Marina Wheeler, his second wife.
“Johnson missed five Cobra emergency meetings at the start of the crisis.”
The story was described as “big” by journalist Michael Crick who tweeted:
Big story which Sunday Times doesn’t make enough of. They say officials fear Cummings will say Johnson missed 5 key Covid meetings at start of crisis as was writing his Shakespeare biography to fund his divorce settlement. I’d heard same from non- Govt source but couldn’t prove. pic.twitter.com/i7BChF5Z4M
— Michael Crick (@MichaelLCrick) May 23, 2021
Former Tory MP Antoinette Sandbach, who was elected MP for Eddisbury, Cheshire at the 2015 general election, and resigned as the Welsh Assembly Member for North Wales the following day, has retweeted Michael Crick’s tweet.
The former Shadow Rural Affairs Minister and Shadow Minister for the Environment also sat on the Assembly’s Environment and Sustainability Committee.
Ms Sandbach was one of 21 Conservative MPs who had their whip withdrawn after rebelling against the Goernment by voting for opposition MPs to control the parliamentary process to try to prevent a no-deal Brexit, after which she sat as an Independent.
She later declared her support for a referendum on the Brexit withdrawal agreement before the local Conservative Association in Eddisbury passed a motion of no-confidence in her.
She reported being called a “disgrace” by a colleague and receiving death threats over her position on Brexit. She then became a Liberal Democrat but lost her seat to her former party in the 2019 general election.
Ms Sandbach’s family owned the Hafodunos estate near Abergele and Bryngwyn Hall near Llanfyllin and she ran the family farming business at Llangernyw, in the Elwy Valley.
Today she tweeted about the revelations in the Sunday Times: “If this is correct and Cummings does say this it would mean that Johnson was prepared to let people die to make a few quid. Says it all really.”
If this is correct and Cummings does say this it would mean that Johnson was prepared to let people die to make a few quid. Says it all really. https://t.co/AeCdqOUVG3
— Antoinette Sandbach (@Sandbach) May 23, 2021
Cummings, best-known for his account of his comings and goings to Durham, and his outing from London to Barnard Castle to “test his eyesight” at the height of the pandemic, has said he will answer questions “for as long as MPs want”.
He will give evidence to MPs about Boris Johnson’s role in making key decisions that critics say may have cost many thousands of lives
He has also said he is prepared to submit private text messages to any Covid-19 inquiry.