Dominic Raab tells Sky News 250 people are in hospital with Omicron – there’s actually 10
The Deputy PM first said that 250 were in hospital, then nine, then ten
Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab managed to get the figures on Omicron hospitalisations wrong in not one but two TV interviews today – leading officials to speak out and correct the record.
Speaking to Sky News this morning, Raab said there were 250 people in hospital with the new Covid-19 variant.
He then went on to the BBC and said that there were nine people hospitalised with Omicron.
In both cases, he got the numbers wrong – in fact, there are actually 10 people currently in hospital with the new variant.
Officials have since gone on the record to say that Raab ‘misspoke’ on both occasions.
After Raab was challenged by broadcaster Adil Ray on GMB. who gave him a third opportunity to put the right figure on the record following the morning’s confusion, he accused him of ‘ranting’ at him.
Raab had earlier told Sky‘s Kay Burley that ‘a significant number’ were hospitalised, but was unable to quote any exact figures when being interviewed by her.
When she pressed him for an answer, he said: “Well the last I saw was in the low hundreds, I think 250 the last time I looked – but of course, the data is being updated all of the time.”
Within the hour, though, he had revised that figure down to just nine in time for his appearance on BBC Breakfast.
Read more: Police release CCTV of missing Charley Gadd’s last known movements in Manchester
“I know we’ve had one death,” he said. “I think we’ve got nine people who are in hospital with it.”
In both instances, Raab was incorrect – as officials later confirmed, stating that there are still only 10 people in hospital as Sajid Javid had told Sky News the day prior.
It is correct, however, that one person in the country has sadly died as a result of contracting Omicron.
Raab later attempted to justify his mistake on Sky News to GMB on the basis of ‘mishearing’ a question.
Feature image – ITV
Tameside police officers hailed ‘absolute heroes’ after saving the life of a seven-year-old girl
Two Tameside police officers have been hailed as “absolute heroes” after saving the life of a seven-year-old little girl.
It comes after emergency services were called to an address in the Greater Manchester borough of Tameside earlier this week (29 November), and found a young girl who was struggling to breath and coughing up blood after choking on a sweet.
Police Constables Aaron Kincaid and James Blundell, from Greater Manchester Police‘s (GMP) Tameside division, were first on the scene.
To the huge relief of the girl’s parents, who were said to be “understandably distressed” and concerned for her welfare, PC Kincaid jumped straight into action and was able to utilise his first aid training to full effect by going on to successfully dislodge the sweet from the youngster’s throat, and then helping to calm her down before the paramedics arrived.
Whilst PC Kincaid looked after the little girl, PC Blundell did “everything he could” to help the parents remain calm.
Paramedics then took over once they arrived, and the young girl was taken to hospital as a precaution.
Reflecting on the incident, and hailing his officers “absolute heroes”, Superintendent Mike Walsh, from GMP’s Tameside district, said: “PCs Aaron Kincaid and James Blundell acted without hesitation during the incident, and took control of the situation that they were faced with.
“They deserve every credit for staying calm under extreme pressure and for working together as a team and utilising their training to lifesaving effect, and I’m sure the girl’s parents and family will consider them to be absolute heroes.”
“We’re both glad that we were in the right place at the right time,” PC Kincaid added.
“I have a daughter the same age as the little girl who needed our help, and I cannot tell you how much of a relief it was when she started breathing normally and said she was okay after I had managed to dislodge the sweet.
“I remember saying, ‘Thank God for that’.
“The little girl gave me a thank you hug before she went to hospital, but I couldn’t have done what I did without PC Blundell’s assistance, so it was a real team effort.”
Featured Image – GMP
Someone has plastered posters advertising ‘authorised drug zones’ all over Manchester city centre
Posters promoting ‘authorised’ drug use and sales have appeared all over Manchester today.
The posters even include Greater Manchester Police and Manchester City Council logos – though, obviously, without the consent of either authority.
The fake posters have also been springing up in other cities, with locals in Leeds spotting them all over the place yesterday.
They read: “Crack and heroin zone. The sale and use of Crack and Heroin is authorised in this area.”
The fake posters have been spotted outside the Central Library and in the Northern Quarter, as well as at locations in other parts of the city.
They were quickly removed by authorities, who say they were posted illegally.
West Yorkshire Police said yesterday: “We are aware of fake posters that have been illegally posted at locations in and around Leeds city centre and are making further enquiries.”
Greater Manchester Police and Manchester City Council have also been approached for comment.
Manchester mayoral candidate Nick Buckey wrote on X: “The lack of action to the drug epidemic in Greater Manchester is so huge that people thought these posters were legitimate.
“When jokes seems like reality then we know we have a problem.”
It appears that the group behind the drug posters project is Pattern Up, a ‘young artist collective from Brighton making their mark on the streets with provocative and witty installations’.
Plenty of people seem to have fallen for the stunt, believing it’s real, with one person posting on Instagram: “Can’t find anything online so surely fake news unless someone has a source.”
Another wrote: “Hahaha f*ck off this can’t be legit.”
Featured image: User submission