Rishi Sunak told Matt Hancock that Dominic Cummings’ time in Downing Street was ‘a nightmare’, new WhatsApp leaks show – while Health Secretary’s aide called advisor ‘a f***ing piece of s***’
- Matt Hancock and Rishi Sunak slammed the ex-advisor in more leaked messages
- These arose when Cummings said thousands needlessly died in the pandemic
Dominic Cummings’ time in Downing Street appeared to be branded a ‘nightmare’ by Rishi Sunak, while Matt Hancock’s aide called him a ‘f***ing piece of sh***’ in the latest leaked WhatsApp messages.
The No 10 aide was slammed in a further release of lockdown files, as the former Health Secretary and then-Chancellor joked of ‘Dom’s circus’.
The remarks were made on the day that Mr Cummings said that thousands of people died needlessly during the pandemic to an audience of MPs.
In the exchange published by The Telegraph, Mr Hancock wrote: ‘Of all the bonkersness about Dom’s circus, the one I enjoy most is that he’s doing this to secure his place at the heart of the future Sunak administration.’
Mr Sunak replied: ‘Ha! Ironic given I haven’t spoken to him since he left!’
The remarks were made on the day that Mr Cummings said that thousands of people died needlessly during the pandemic to an audience of MPs
These messages show Mr Hancock’s aide, Jamie Njoku-Goodwin, lashing out at Mr Cummings, on the same day he described the Department of Health and Social Care as a ‘smoking ruin’
Matt Hancock and Rishi Sunak slammed the former Chief Advisor Dominic Cummings
‘It’s just awful & a stark reminder of how hard governing was,’ Mr Hancock says back.
Mr Sunak agrees: ‘It was such a difficult time for all of us. A nightmare I hope we never ever have to repeat.’
‘His insight is no better than his eyesight,’ Mr Hancock replies – following Mr Cummings’ claim that he broke lockdown rules to test his vision.
The messages also show Mr Hancock’s aide, Jamie Njoku-Goodwin, lashing out at Mr Cummings, on the same day he described the Department of Health and Social Care as a ‘smoking ruin’.
This took place four months prior to Mr Cummings exit from Downing Street at a parliamentary meeting in 2021.
Mr Hancock messaged: ‘How would you deal with this Cummings c***?’
His adviser responded: ‘I was about to message. What a f***ing piece of s***. You went out and backed him over Barnard castle, and he responds by briefing against you relentlessly, in private and now in public. He’s a psychotherapist.’
He quickly corrects himself: ‘Psychopath.’
Dominic Cummings claimed Boris Johnson’s ‘disastrous’ handling of the pandemic had caused tens of thousands to die needlessly
Mr Njoku-Goodwin has been approached for a response.
In other exchanges, Mr Hancock expressed concern that the signature Eat Out to Help Out initiative was worsening the spread of Covid, dubbing it ‘eat out to help the virus get about’.
The state-backed scheme offered customers a 50 per cent discount, up to £10, on meals and soft drinks on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays as businesses sought to recover from the pandemic.
He wrote: ‘Just want to let you know directly that we have had lots of feedback that Eat our to help out is causing problems in our jntervention [sic] areas. I’ve kept it out of the news but it’s serious.
‘So please please lets not allow the economic success of the scheme to lead to its extension.’
Mr Hancock also accused Mr Sunak of trying to ‘show ankle’ to the ‘hard right’ over his Covid-19 stance in another message.
In October 2020, he wrote: ‘What’s Rishi’s dilemma? Whether to stop the virus, or tilt at the party & show ankle to the hard right?’
Matt Hancock said the leaked WhatsApp messages are ‘highly intrusive’ and ‘completely inappropriate’
The exchanges were among more than 100,000 messages passed to the Telegraph by the journalist Isabel Oakeshott.
She was originally given the material by Mr Hancock while they were collaborating on his memoir of his time in government during the pandemic.
Mr Hancock has condemned the leak as a ‘massive betrayal’ designed to support an ‘anti-lockdown agenda’.
In a statement this week, Mr Hancock said that all the materials for his book have been made available to the official Covid-19 inquiry.
Ms Oakeshott has said the disclosures are in the public interest.
The paper also published messages showing Mr Hancock and his officials scrambling to save the health secretary’s career after footage emerged of his embrace with aide Gina Coladangelo.
A spokesman for Mr Hancock said: ‘There’s nothing new in these messages, and absolutely no public interest in publishing them given the independent inquiry has them all. It’s highly intrusive, completely inappropriate and has all been discussed endlessly before.’
Source: Read Full Article