Nicola Sturgeon snipes at Boris Johnson over Covid response

Nicola Sturgeon snipes at Boris Johnson with claims Scotland is ‘reaping the dividends’ of her cautious approach to coronavirus crisis after she claims PM ‘made up’ his June 21 back to normal date

  • Nicola Sturgeon has sniped at Boris Johnson over his coronavirus crisis response
  • Tweeted story arguing Scotland benefited by taking different approach to PM
  • Comes after Ms Sturgeon claimed Mr Johnson had ‘made up’ June 21 exit date 

Nicola Sturgeon has taken a swipe at Boris Johnson over his response to the coronavirus crisis as she appeared to back claims that Scotland had done better than England. 

Ms Sturgeon tweeted a story published by the Financial Times with the headline ‘Scotland reaps dividend of Covid response that diverged from England’. 

The Scottish First Minister said the story, which suggested ‘Sturgeon’s greater willingness to maintain restrictions has helped Scotland keep deaths and infections lower than in England’, was ‘worth a read’. 

It comes after Ms Sturgeon yesterday claimed that the Prime Minister had ‘made up’ his target date of June 21 for getting life in England back to something close to normal.

Nicola Sturgeon has sniped at Boris Johnson over his response to the coronavirus crisis 

Ms Sturgeon yesterday claimed Mr Johnson had 'made up' his back to normal date of June 21

Ms Sturgeon yesterday claimed Mr Johnson had ‘made up’ his back to normal date of June 21

The latest coronavirus statistics published yesterday showed that Scotland had recorded a further 47 deaths from the disease.

That brought the death toll in Scotland under this measure – of people who first tested positive for the virus within the previous 28 days – to 7,053. 

Meanwhile, NHS England said yesterday a further 302 people had died in hospital from coronavirus.

That brought the total number of confirmed deaths reported in hospitals in England during the pandemic to 82,156.   

Ms Sturgeon and Mr Johnson are locked in a row over their respective lockdown exit strategies. 

Ms Sturgeon’s roadmap is considerably more cautious than Mr Johnson’s, with the PM having set a June 21 deadline for all significant rules to have been lifted. 

The SNP leader has faced a backlash over her approach with critics suggesting the strategy is vague because it fails to give any firm dates beyond April for rules to be loosened. Ms Sturgeon has promised to give another update in mid-March. 

Fending off criticism of her approach yesterday, the First Minister said she would not give any dates until she knows they are ‘real’.

‘If I was to give you a fixed, hard and fast date right now, I would pretty much be making it up and I don’t think that’s the approach I should take with you,’ she said.

‘I’m not ruling out any specific dates. I want it to be as soon as possible and we have every reason to be hopeful that come the summer life will be much, much, much better than it is just now, but when I stand here and give you what I think the actual date when all or most restrictions will come to an end is going to be, I want to be as sure as I can be that is real and it can be delivered.’