Whatsapp messages suggest disgraceful failure to work with Scottish Government – Scotsman comment

SNP’s usual hostility towards the Conservatives may have played a part in their lack of candour

WhatsApp messages from Dominic Cummings to Boris Johnson – sent as Covid arrived and now released by the Covid Inquiry – appear to show the then political aide giving instructions to the then Prime Minister to exclude the Scottish Government and other devolved administrations from high-level discussions.

On March 12, 2020, Cummings told Johnson: “You need to chair daily meetings in the Cabinet room – not Cobra – on this from tomorrow. I’m going to tell the system this. NOT with the DAs [devolved administrations] on the f***ign [sic] phone all the time either so people can’t tell you the truth.”

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A Scottish Government source said this “jaw-dropping admission” suggested they had been misled and wondered about its effects on their actions. At the time, both governments were considering measures like a lockdown.

Given the SNP’s hostility to the Conservatives, they should perhaps take some of the blame for the lack of candour. But, whatever the rights and wrongs, it is beyond disgraceful that at a time of national crisis, a life-and-death matter, our elected leaders were apparently unable to work together.



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