Portsmouth council leader and MPs react to 'grim' milestone of UK exceeding 100,000 Covid-19 deaths

REFLECTING on a milestone both tragic and lamentable, politicians across Portsmouth have called on the city to grieve and remain resilient as the country exceeds 100,000 deaths from Covid-19.

By Richard Lemmer
Tuesday, 26th January 2021, 8:03 pm

The government has now confirmed that the UK has passed 100,000 deaths within 28 days of positive Covid test, with more than 230 people in Portsmouth dying from Covid-19 since the pandemic began a year ago.

Politicians from across the city called on residents to reflect on the losses and sacrifices made to combat the virus, while remaining committed to efforts to keep people safe.

Responding to the ‘very tragic, grim milestone’, Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt said: ‘People will be feeling very down when they see this figure.

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Nurses tend to a coronavirus patient. Stock Photo by ADEK BERRY/AFP via Getty Images)

‘As a city we have lost a tremendous amount of people.

‘But because of what people are doing, we are turning the tide in this lockdown.

‘’In the north of the city – in all bar one area – we are going in the right direction.

‘I think people will be down, but we have to stick with it.

Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt.

‘I work closely with people taking critical decisions, I have been in Whitehall for a lot of this pandemic and people are doing their best in the circumstances.

‘The prime minister is right in what he said – we have got to stick with this.’

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he took ‘full responsibility’ for the government’s decisions during the pandemic – but Portsmouth City Council leader Gerald Vernon-Jackson found the words hollow.

Council leader Gerald Vernon-Jackson. Picture: Habibur Rahman

Cllr Vernon-Jackson said: ‘If he did, he wouldn’t be in the job.

‘He has not been quite as bad as Donald Trump – but it’s close.

‘We have made mistake after mistake. The government failed to lockdown quickly enough, there was indecision about schools going back...it’s been lamentable.

‘The problem we have got is that it has been too little, too late too often in this pandemic.

Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan. Picture: Habibur Rahman

‘It’s been devastating for so many families across the city. Our hearts must go out to them.’

Stephen Morgan, MP for Portsmouth South, called upon everyone to remember those have died and ‘redouble’ efforts to stop others from falling victim to the disease.

The MP said: ‘With every death is a loved one, a friend, or a colleague. This pandemic is touching the lives of every single one of us here in Portsmouth.

‘Whilst important lessons must be learnt, today we must redouble our efforts to stay at home, protect our NHS and vaccinate Britain.’

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