This week in London, 1353 days since his initial COVID lockdown, former UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson testified at the nation’s pandemic investigation, which he initiated in hopes of bolstering his legacy. Despite his meticulous year-long preparation and a toned-down demeanor, many Westminster insiders seemed disinterested, amidst the party's new immigration crisis.
's testimony did unveil fresh insights, acknowledging "incoherence" in his government's response and refusing to refute negative remarks about vulnerable individuals. However, the current government's controversial Rwanda asylum seeker plan, unveiled by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, overshadowed his appearance.
Supporters and media alike downplayed Johnson
's inquiry presence with low audience ratings and attention diverted to internal party conflicts. Despite a desire for a thorough analysis of the state’s missteps, insiders criticized the inquiry's focus on sensational text message scandals of Johnson
Simon Clarke, a former minister, and Guto Harri, ex-communications director, were among the few to publicly praise Johnson
's handling of the crisis. However, discourse suggests little chance of a Johnson
political comeback, as he's since turned to journalism, joining the Daily Mail and soon GB News.
Critics say the inquiry will not rehabilitate Johnson
's image, marred by scandals, including illegal lockdown parties. They believe his legacy is permanently marked by a tumultuous term, despite Brexit achievements and a former electoral victory.
Even with speculation of Johnson
’s intent behind his well-prepared testimony, critics and the bereaved see no justification for his return to power. Becky Kummer, representing COVID
-19 Bereaved Families for Justice UK, expressed the sentiment that Johnson
’s mismanagement had significant human costs, concluding that personal ambition had trumped public welfare.