After the government announced a 1.25% increase to national insurance, LBC host Nick Ferrari asked Health Secretary Sajid Javid why they were necessary, referencing the £350m per week that was promised for the NHS by Vote Leave.
Ferrari said: “A couple of years ago, we were told that if we left the European Union, we’d be saving £350m per week which would go to the NHS…that’s tens of billions of pounds we’ve saved. Where is it? Why do we need this additional funding now we’ve left the European Union?”
Javid: responded: “Despite all the extra money that has gone into the NHS, even before the pandemic. And the money that has continued to go in, because of the impact of the pandemic, it hasn’t been enough to meet the targets.”
When Ferrari pushed Javid on this, asking why the “10s of billions of pounds isn’t bailing out the NHS”, he responded saying: “As we’ve left the EU, it happened at the same time as a global pandemic.
“That money, and much much more, has gone into the health and social care service and we have seen in the first year of the pandemic, the government putting in an additional more than £40bn.
“So much bigger than you’ve focussed on - because of the pandemic.”
Javid failed to mention that this £350m figure has been debunked. As the website Full Fact pointed out: “We have never paid the EU £350 million a week and we have never owed the EU £350 million a week. After we leave the EU, that means we cannot take back control of £350 million a week.
However, if you adjust the claim to make it more accurate, it will always miss the key context: economists on both sides during the referendum predicted that the impact on the economy from changes to trade and more would be far bigger than the UK’s EU membership fee.”
Sajjid Javid insisted that £350m per week from Brexit was going towards the NHS regardless of the fact that the £350m per week saving promised by Vote Leave was a fabricated claim that does not exist and never has existed.
We contacted Sajjid Javid to give him the opportunity to respond to this verdict. He did not reply.