MP Jonathan Ashworth joined Charlie Stayt and Naga Munchetty today on BBC Breakfast amid the ongoing coronavirus. Ashworth wanted to focus on what could be done to increase the number of coronavirus tests being carried out after grand government promises, however, Munchetty shut the MP down telling him that he wasn’t saying anything she hadn’t heard before.
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Ashworth was brought onto the BBC testing show today as well as the ongoing lockdown.
Munchetty began: “What are you expecting to hear when it comes to an extension of the social and physical restrictions that we are all under?
Ashworth explained: “I expect them to announce that the lockdown that we are under at the moment will be extended.
“I mean there are still people who aren’t in lockdown because they have to go to work and we are still looking for some clear guidance regarding them, especially in the construction industry, when it doesn’t seem to be essential work.
“We would expect the lockdown to continue and we support that I actually called for a lockdown before the government introduced one.
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“We also want more details from the government on what happens next.
“I mean yesterday the Junior Health Minister was saying that we shouldn’t be asking about an exit strategy because there is no exit strategy until we get a vaccine.
“Well, that could be 18 months away so if the government is going to keep us in lockdown for 18 months they probably need to tell us.
“I would say that the only way to come out of lockdown would be to move to a testing contact strategy, so I’ll be looking to hear where the gov is on those 100,000 tests they have promised, we are only around 16,000 at the moment.”
Munchetty said: “I hate to interrupt, I do, but the practicality is that we are not at the point, so what is the plan? Because if Labour was in government right now I am assuming that you would be in exactly the same position due to manufacturing.”
The MP went on to talk about testing again but Munchetty went in once again.
She said: “You would have got involved if you were in government but you didn’t have a leader until Sir Keir Starmer was announced.
“You didn’t have one central voice to challenge the government, to hear government and to put a voice in government. You weren’t there.”
Ashworth said: “Well, we now have a leader. I am very happy with our leader and he is pulling the party together.”