The UK’s Covid-19 Inquiry is delving into the political decisions made during the pandemic, focusing on lockdowns, travel restrictions, and social distancing measures. Led by Baroness Heather Hallett, this inquiry will closely examine the government’s actions from January 2020 to February 2022, encompassing the period until the final Covid restrictions were lifted in England.
The investigation encompasses various aspects, such as regional restrictions (the “tier system”), work-from-home orders, mask mandates, and border controls. Scientists’ modeling data, estimating virus transmission and death rates, will also undergo scrutiny. Key figures, including Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his cabinet, are expected to present evidence. This includes potentially revealing WhatsApp messages from Johnson’s device, shedding light on decisions related to the three lockdowns enforced in 2020.
Additionally, the inquiry will focus on Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, examining overarching issues in these regions. Public hearings for this phase are set to commence at Dorland House in London. These hearings, spanning from October 3 to December 14, will involve various witnesses. Joanna Goodman, Dr. Alan Wightman, and Anna-Louise Marsh-Rees from Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice, among others, will present their testimonies. The inquiry aims to ensure transparency and accountability in the government’s response to the pandemic, offering a comprehensive review of the decisions made and their consequences.