As the Indian variant of COVID-19 continues to rise across the UK, Good Morning Britain host Adil Ray demanded answers from Conservative MP George Eustice about why the government took so long to stop people from entering the country from India. As Eustice made excuses, Ray slapped down the politician insisting his answers weren’t good enough and demanded he admit to making a mistake.
“Why do you then err on the side of, ‘Well it’s still okay, let them come?’” Ray demanded to know.
Eustice replied: “Well we didn’t we did put India on the red list.”
“Yes you did! Yes you did!” Ray raged. “Yes you did! 20,000 Indian travellers came here.
“A combinations of Indians and British Indians came here between the moment you locked down India and Pakistan and the time you eventually put them onto the red list.
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“Yet, we didn’t shut the border to India sooner. We have discussed the fact that the point where Pakistan was put onto the red list, April 9, Pakistan had 21 cases per million India had 50 cases per million.
“By the time that we put India on red list Pakistan had 23 cases per million, India 168. We were far too late and look what’s happened.”
“What I would say when you look at which countries should be going on the red list,” Eustice began. “We have to look at the prevalence in those countries.
“One of the things you have to take into account is not just how many declared cases there are but also their testing capacity.
“So India had much greater testing capacity than Pakistan, that’s why a decision was taken to put Pakistan on the list earlier.
“We still put India on the list a full six days before this was a variant that was under investigation.”
Many of those tuning in to GMB were quick to praise Reid and Ray for their grilling of the Tory MP.
“Superb interviewing by @adilray and @susannareid100. Second best team in the history of GMB I’d say. Holding the government to account,” one viewer wrote.
Another added: “@GMB IS BACK!!! Brilliant interview…well done @susannareid100 & @adilray #nomorelies.”
Good Morning Britain airs weekdays on ITV at 6am.