Anyone surprised by BoJo’s decision to condone shameful bullying at the heart of his government and order a “square” of defence be formed “around the prittster” after he decided to keep Priti Patel in his cabinet despite her being found guilty of breaching the Ministerial Code and bullying, has plainly been sleeping over the past eleven months.
That period has exposed the rancid hypocrisy, corruption, cronyism, and lack of integrity which characterises Johnson and the Tories under his leadership.
Priti Patel was accused of disgraceful conduct and bullying while an employment Minister under Theresa May in 2015, behaviour which drove a female civil servant to attempt suicide on at least two occasions and ended with a Department of Work and Pensions pay-out of £25,000 in April 2017 to avoid the scrutiny of an Employment Tribunal for unfair dismissal, harassment, discrimination, and victimisation.
Patel the Bully Became Patel the Liar
Patel was then moved to the role of International Secretary only to be found out as a devious liar whom May had to sack after her deliberate misleading of the PM and Parliament over secret meetings with Israeli officials, business representatives and lobbyists was exposed. She lied and was caught. She had to go.
Being a dishonest bully presented no barrier to Boris Johnson’s cabinet however and he appointed Patel as his Home Secretary in July 2019 after he became Tory leader.
Within weeks the top civil servant in the Home Office, Sir Philip Rutnam, felt compelled to warn her about her conduct and lack of respect for staff before eventually resigning from his post at the end of February this year in a move which caused shock waves in the civil service and government. He accused Patel of lying about a “vicious” campaign orchestrated against him and creating a climate of fear in her department.
Patel Investigation Handicapped from the Outset
A high-level investigation was reluctantly ordered into the allegations made by Rutnam, and he vowed to pursue a constructive dismissal claim against the government which is yet to be concluded. It is increasingly clear that the investigation has been less than rigorous as the senior civil servant appointed to conduct it was refused access to Rutnman despite him being the best equipped to inform the investigation.
However the report that was compiled was laid on Johnson’s desk in April and he refused to act on it for months before recently contacting the author, Sir Alex Allan, and leaning on him to water down the conclusions. Despite the limited access to witnesses the investigation still found Priti Patel “shouted and swore” at staff in actions “that can be described as bullying” and that she had indeed breached the Ministerial Code which is normally an automatic resignation offence.
The fact Sir Alex Allan, former chair of the prestigious Joint Intelligence Committee, chose to resign rather than alter his report to save Patel’s reputation is admirable, but the full report is being kept secret. It must be revealed in full and the fact it was severely handicapped by the barring of access to Rutman’s input must also be highlighted.
Johnson Willing to Protect Patel but not Pensioners in Care Homes
Patel was ordered to issue an apology on camera on Friday but all it did was rub salt in the wounds of the campaign against bullying as she smugly smirked and smiled when she claimed no knowledge of bullying but apologised anyway. Please watch and remember – her conduct drove a lowly paid civil servant to attempt suicide on two occasions and compelled a very senior civil servant to resign. The lack of contrition for her actions and empathy for her victims is truly frightening.
If Johnson and his Tory gang of millionaires and spivs showed an iota of the concern and commitment to defend elderly care residents as they have shown to defend lying bully Patel at least 20,000 lives could have been saved. A shocking report compiled by Amnesty International last month received very little media attention but condemned the Tory Covid19 response as a dereliction of duty and care towards elderly citizens.
Read the document and understand just how complicit this Tory government is in the deaths of thousands of senior citizens. It presents evidence that the government’s policy of herd immunity was responsible for mass murder. The government was entirely aware of the probable outcome of their policy and went ahead regardless of the risk to thousands of lives.
The report, “As if expendable: The UK government’s failure to protect older people in care homes during the Covid-19 pandemic”, details how, between March 2 and June 12, 18,562 residents of care homes in England died with COVID-19. The vast majority (18,168) were aged 65 and over, representing almost 40 percent of all deaths involving the virus in England during this time frame. Of these, 76 percent (13,844 deaths) occurred within care homes for the elderly.
During this brief period, 28,186 “excess deaths” were recorded in English care homes, a 46 percent increase in comparison with the same period over previous years.
Amnesty conclude that the Tory government together with its agencies at national and local level have “taken decisions and adopted policies during the Covid-19 pandemic that have directly violated the human rights of older residents of care homes in England—notably their right to life, their right to health, and their right to non-discrimination”.
The report argues that the decisions and policies of the Tory government “impacted the rights of care home residents to private and family life, and may have violated their right not to be subjected to inhuman or degrading treatment”.
Johnson was determined to “form a square around the prittster” to defend his lying bully Patel at the Home Office but didn’t lift a finger to defend thousands of pensioners in care homes. That is the warped and putrid priorities which define this government.
A Litany of Government Failures but No Resignations
Their top advisor broke lockdown rules but there was no resignation.
They have been caught awarding contracts worth over £20 billion of public money without proper scrutiny or tendering processes to friends of senior Tories and companies known to donate to the Tory party and no one has resigned.
The UK government’s late response to Covid-19 and failure to impose lockdown measures caused the unnecessary deaths of 20,000 but no one resigned from government.
International law will be broken because of the government’s Internal Market Bill but no one resigns.
The Johnson government backs bullies, liars, public contract cheats and international law breaking. It is morally repugnant and thoroughly incompetent. No wonder Scotland is so keen to break away as soon as possible.