The COVID Diaries – 263 12th January
Gaps are appearing on supermarket shelves due to the combined
impact of new Brexit red tape hitting imports and staff sickness arising from
the coronavirus. Fresh fruit and vegetables are being particularly affected.
More disruption is expected as delays occur at borders and
uncertainty over new trading rules causes confusion.
Online supermarket Ocado has
warned of shortages of some products this week
The COVID Diaries – 262 11th January
The head of the National Health Service in England has told MPs
that the spread of Covid-19 is out of control in many parts of the country.
Simon Stevens told the Public Accounts Committee: “We are
facing an incredibly serious situation. We have more than 30,000 severely ill
coronavirus patients in hospitals across England.
“That is up by 13,000 just since Christmas Day. In London
perhaps one in 30 people has the coronavirus, in parts of London, it may be
twice that number and if you look across other regions of England. The issue is
the coronavirus is once again on the rise, in Merseyside for example, in just
the last week, there has been a further 50 per cent, increase in the number of
The COVID Diaries – 261 10th January
Momentum is growing behind moves for a second impeachment of
Donald Trump which has now gained senior Republican support.
Senator Pat Toomey said he believed the president had committed
Toomey also called for Trump’s resignation – the second
Republican to do so since Wednesday’s violence.
The COVID Diaries – 260 9th January
The number of Covid-19 deaths in the United Kingdom has now
risen above 80,000 with the total number of fatalities related to the virus
increasing by more than a thousand for the fourth day in a row.
Scientists have warned that current restrictions are still
allowing a lot of activity which is spreading the virus and that lockdown
measures need to be strengthened.
The COVID Diaries – 259 8th January
Today it is appropriate to share some words from President elect Joe Biden:
Donald Trump is the “most incompetent president in the history of the United States of America”.
has exceeded even my worst notions about him.”
are two ways people are inspired – by inspirational leaders and by terrible
this president has done is ripped the bandage right off to let the country know
who he is and what he’s about, and how thoroughly unfit for office he is.”
“This isn’t about Republican-Democrat
anymore. This is about people who understand what this country is about and the
things we have to agree on and move together on.”
The COVID Diaries – 258 7th January
Following Donald Trump’s incitement of far-right activists to march on
the Capitol in Washington, which resulted in the building being stormed, 4
deaths and the ceremonial count of electoral college votes being suspended,
Speaker Nancy Pelosi has stated she is prepared to move forward with articles
of impeachment against Donald Trump if Vice President Mike Pence does not
replace him through a process laid out in the Constitution’s 25th Amendment.
“I join the Senate Democratic leader in calling on the vice president to
remove this president by immediately invoking the 25th amendment,” Ms Pelosi
The COVID Diaries – 257 6th January
Today the United States has seen the probably inevitable conclusion of Donald Trump’s desperate lies and refusal to accept that he lost the presidential election. His Vice-President, Mike Pence, has had to explain to him that his role in formally counting the electoral college votes is to record the will of the states, not bow to some brutal mob boss who thinks he can order the will of the people to be ignored.
Trump spoke to the mob, wound them up like clockwork and they stormed the Capitol so proceedings had to be halted. Scenes we never thought we would see in the US. It is ugly, horrible but the inevitable outcome of Trump’s presidency.
In contrast, President Biden made a statesmanlike speech – the speech the president should have made. On 20th January he becomes president and America can start to rebuild. It can’t come a day too soon.
The COVID Diares – 256 5th January
So, one day after saying schools are
safe, Boris Johnson has announced that primary and secondary schools in England
must close to almost all pupils, and everyone must stay at home.
Lockdowns with similar rules are in
place in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
1 in 50 people are now infected with
Covid-19 and, yet again, the question is why did it take the Prime Minister so
long to act. Putting off the inevitable just makes everything worse.
People can only go out for essential
The COVID Diaries – 255 3rd January
Government published figures show that for the sixth day in a
row new coronavirus cases in the UK have topped 50,000, with a further 54,990
people testing positive.
The total number of people who have died within 28 days of a
positive Covid-19 test in the UK is now over 75,000.
Teachers are expressing fears over schools reopening and there is
despair after Boris Johnson claimed schools are safe to open, despite the surge
in infection levels.
The COVID Diaries – 254 2nd January
Education secretary Gavin Williamson is facing renewed calls that he should resign as his plans for school reopening next week descend into chaos.
Former health secretary Jeremy
Hunt said: “It is massively risky to open schools when so many parts of the NHS
are teetering on the brink. The economic and human impact of keeping them
closed is severe – but so too is the impact of thousands of wholly avoidable
extra deaths. So I wouldn’t be surprised if we end up effectively keeping the
majority of schools closed until the February half-term.”
the government’s Scientific Advisory Group
for Emergencies has warned that it would be “highly unlikely” that the pandemic could be
brought under control if schools open next week.