Jeremy Corbyn: PM’s flood response ‘wholly inadequate’

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Jeremy Corbyn has criticised Boris Johnson for not having visited communities hit by flooding across the country, saying the government response was “wholly inadequate”.

The Labour leader also said the fact the Prime Minister had not convened a meeting of emergency committee Cobra showed he "simply does not care" now that the general election campaign is over.

More than 100 flood warnings remain in place in England, including six severe warnings that indicate lives are in danger near the Welsh border.

Persistent rain has seen the Met Office raise yellow weather warnings across parts of southern Scotland, northwestern England and Wales as recovery efforts continue following Storm Dennis.

Mr Corbyn is set to visit South Wales today to meet with residents and volunteers, saying the communities most vulnerable to flooding had been “badly let down time and time again”.

“In refusing to visit flood-hit communities, nowhere-to-be-seen Boris Johnson is showing his true colours by his absence,” Mr Corbyn said.

“Failing to convene Cobra to support flood-hit communities sends a very clear message: if the Prime Minister is not campaigning for votes in a general election he simply does not care about helping communities affected by flooding, especially communities that have repeatedly been flooded in recent years.”

Even a Conservative MP – Craig Whittaker for Calder Valley in West Yorkshire – has criticised the response for being too slow.

But Life Sciences minister Nadhim Zahawi has defended Number 10, telling talkRADIO that the Environment Agency is “working night and day” to get money and aid to those affected.

He added that "a single home being impacted is one too many". 

Mr Zahawi then asked Mike Graham: “What would your listeners prefer, actually a Prime Minister who focuses his ministerial team on delivering and getting the money out of the door, or a media jamboree for a photo opportunity?”

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