Trevor Phillips grills Robert Jenrick on contact testing pilot
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The news comes as Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak were pinged by the NHS Test&Trace App after they had close contact with Health Secretary Sajid Javid who tested positive for Coronavirus on Saturday. The BBC host launched a ferocious assault on Mr Jenrick as it was confirmed by Downing Street that the pair would take part in a pilot programme where daily tests replace self-isolation. But events have caused an uproar as the pilot scheme is supposed to “randomly select” individuals to take part prompting many to question that the move is simply not just a “coincidence”.
Andrew Marr slammed: “Is it simply a coincidence the Prime Minister is on this pilot scheme?”
But Mr Jenrick dodged the question: “There is a whole range of public sector organisations that are part of this particular pilot, we will learn from this pilot and so if does succeed… it may be available to more people.”
Mr Marr replied: “Who made the decision that Number 10 was going to be part of this pilot scheme?”
The Housing Secretary flailed and said: “I don’t know Andrew but it has been part of it for some time, this is not a recent decision.”
Mr Marr slammed as temperatures rose: “This is about moral authority, this is about the population listening to the government’s advice and deciding to abide by it.
“This is the kind of thing that makes people ask ‘why should we self-isolate, why should we keep our apps on’ when the Prime Minister and the Chancellor and other ministers seem to get outside the system and seem to get around it?”
The Housing Secretary replied: “I understand that but this is a pilot scheme involving with a range of different public sector organisations, not just Number 10 Downing Street
“It doesn’t involve others, my department is not part of it so the normal rules will have to apply to me and many others.”
Mr Johnson and Mr Sunak will have to self-isolate when not working and will only conduct essential business.
More to follow…
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