PM said test and trace would be ‘like whistling in the dark’, says Cummings

Former adviser publishes contents of April 2020 email from Boris Johnson expressing concern over Matt Hancock’s plans for testing

Boris Johnson believed the national test-and-trace system was “like whistling in the dark” and that the UK was on course to achieve the “double distinction of being the European country with the most fatalities and the biggest economic hit”, he reportedly told Dominic Cummings at the height of the pandemic’s first wave.

The prime minister allegedly expressed his view in an email to his closest adviser in April 2020 amid concern in Downing Street over serious shortcomings in plans for mass testing by Matt Hancock’s Department of Health and Social Care.

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