“It’s consistent with the guidance at the time”

Dominic Raab, Sky News

December 19, 2021

Facts

An image was shared by the Guardian of Boris Johnson, his wife Carrie Johnson and up to 17 staff in the Downing Street garden with what appears to be cheese and wine in May last year, as the whole country was in lockdown.

Kay Burley asked Dominic Raab about the images, to which Mr Raab said that the gathering outside Downing Street was “consistent with the guidance at the time”. 

At the time social mixing between households was limited to two people, who could only meet outdoors and at a distance of at least two metres.

In workplaces, the guidance said in-person meetings should only take place if “absolutely necessary”.

Police are investigating 12 alleged Downing Street or Whitehall events. 

In her interim report, published on 31st January 2022, Sue Grey stated that  "At least some of the gatherings represent a serious failure to observe not just the high standards expected of those working at the heart of government but also of the standards expected of the entire British population at the time."

Verdict

This gathering was not consistent with the guidance at the time. Dominic Raab - not for the first time - was therefore misleading television viewers about Boris Johnson respect for Covid rules.

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