Ex-Johnson aide lambasts UK government over COVID failures

LONDON (AP) — Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s former chief aide has lashed out at the government he once served, saying people died “in horrific circumstances” because of authorities’ failed response. Cummings made a blistering attack on the government he once worked for, saying some ministers and officials went on vacation as the pandemic swept towards the U.K. in February 2020. He told lawmakers investigating Britain’s coronavirus response that the government “was not operating on a war footing” and “lots of people were literally skiing.” He said ”senior ministers, senior officials, senior advisers like me, disastrously short of the standards that the public has a right to expect.” The U.K. has recorded almost 128,000 coronavirus deaths, the highest toll in Europe.