January 29, 2022

In the UK, Boris Johnson now challenged by his own camp

Things are not getting better for Boris Johnson, whose popularity has plummeted after a series of missteps and controversies in recent weeks. The British Prime Minister is now challenged by his own camp: Tuesday, December 14, 99 Conservative MPs dared to vote in the House of Commons against part of his « plan B » intended to counter the meteoric advance of the Omicron variant in the country.

While the plan was adopted because it was backed by opposition Labor MPs, it is the largest Tory rebellion since Mr Johnson entered 10 Downing Street in July 2019 and signed it. of a serious crisis of authority. Tuesday evening, this vote further fueled rumors of a possible internal race for candidates to replace Mr Johnson at the head of the party, and therefore of the government.

Read also Article reserved for our subscribers Covid-19: facing Omicron, the United Kingdom accelerates the pace for the third dose but refuses restrictive health measures

The health measures put to the vote were however moderate compared to those taken in other countries. But the right wing of the Conservative Party, very “libertarian”, had made it a question of principle. Tory elected officials rebelled against the requirement for a vaccination passport to access large gatherings and nightclubs, and, to a lesser extent, against compulsory vaccination of hospital staff.

Succession of blunders

Bob Seely, elected from the Isle of Wight, said to himself ” tiredness “ from “Ridiculous extrapolations” scientists advising the government. His colleague Richard Drax, an elected official from South Dorset, found the government’s measures “Bad”, “it’s time to put fear aside and let people go on with their lives.” “The Covid-19 will still be there for many years to come, it is unthinkable that, every fall, we limit the quality of life of our fellow citizens just for safety reasons”, said Andrea Leadsom, former Secretary of State to Theresa May and Mr Johnson.

The government’s alarming numbers and comments did nothing. Omicron variant infections double every two to three days in the UK. This form of SARS-CoV-2 is taking precedence over the Delta variant in London. Downing Street fears 1 million infections at the end of December. Boris Johnson spoke of a ” tsunami ” in the coming weeks. Sajid Javid, the British Minister for Health, insisted, Tuesday, before the votes, on the need for” Act now ‘, qualifying Omicron’s advance as “Serious threat”. “Infections are progressing so quickly that we fear that hospitalizations will increase substantially even before the measures adopted have an impact.”

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