Boris Johnson can ‘honour’ those who saved lives with a pay rise

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Wednesday 12 May 2021 16:14
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<p>The prime minister  speaks about the Covid-19 pandemic in the House of Commons on 12 May</p>

The prime minister speaks about the Covid-19 pandemic in the House of Commons on 12 May

Boris Johnson has just announced a UK commission on coronavirus commemoration to “remember the loved ones we have lost, honour the heroism of those who have saved lives and the courage of frontline workers who have kept this country going”.

The prime minister showed how much he “honoured” NHS health workers in England by insulting them with a 1 per cent wage “rise”.

NHS nurses pulled Johnson through his own brush with Covid-19.

His subsequent refusal to pay them a decent wage says everything about the gratitude he feels towards “frontline workers who have kept this country going”.

Sasha Simic

London

Trump playbook

I have just finished reading The Independent's editorial about the Queen's Speech, and I agree with every word, especially the paragraph about the Electoral Integrity Bill being straight from the Donald Trump playbook.

That analysis could be applied to much else in the speech.

Is it any wonder, therefore, that many Scots want to leave the union with England?

Surely anyone wanting a fairer society would not want to be associated with the type of world alluded to by this Queen's Speech.

I would like to think that the Queen would also understand the rationale behind rejecting union with a government embracing Trumpism.

Alan Lammin

Dumfries

India in pain

The spread of Covid-19 has apparently made many Indian government officials insensitive and uncaring. The media has reported that about 100 bodies have been washed ashore on to the banks of the Ganges river, in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh states. These are suspected by locals to be the bodies of Covid-19 patients, whose relations could not get hospital admissions, nor could they muster the money to cremate or bury the dead relatives. So, the bodies were apparently just slipped into the Ganges river?

Citing the incident, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, the union minister of Jal Shakti, tweeted: “We have taken serious note of the issue of dumping dead bodies in River Ganga and instituted measures for the prohibition of the same.

“The Centre through the NMCG and district authorities will ensure all unidentified bodies are disposed as per the protocol."

How did these people die? Why are we becoming so casual about the deaths of our fellow citizens?

A clean river is important. But what’s more shocking is the sheer helplessness of a nation that cannot treat its sick. Even more brutal is that when people with Covid-19 pass away, their families could be just slipping the bodies in a river, without any last rites and records. Each of the 100 bodies washed to the banks needs to be identified. Their last rites should be performed.

The incident underscores the real tragedy of India – that India is in real pain. Such cruelty is unacceptable.

Rajendra Aneja

Mumbai

Identity cards

How long will it take to check polling station identity cards? If it takes one minute per voter, the 10th voter in line will have to wait 10 extra minutes to vote. The 60th in line will wait an hour. Who can do this on their way to work? How long will elderly voters have to stand in line outside the polling stations and will councils supply chairs, water plus possible medical assistance?

All to address a “problem” that does not exist. And we pay for this through increased council tax.

Doubtless, the government thinks this won't deter Conservative voters as much as their opponents. Well, after spending an hour or more queuing up to vote due to the government’s pointless new bureaucracy, I'll hardly feel like voting for them. They must drop this cynical anti-democratic nonsense immediately.

Barry Tighe

Woodford Green

Soft Tories

The trouble with the Labour Party is they are mostly soft Tories. Sir this and Lord that, seemingly more interested in self-promotion rather than working people, now run by people who likely don’t know the inside of a factory or a building site. As it’s been proved by the spending during this pandemic. Money can be found if needed – is there some Jabba the Hutt sitting on a pile of money who a government with one of the largest economies in the world has to go cap in hand to?

Those Labour MPs who, along with parts of the media, destroyed a decent man – Jeremy Corbyn – are now reaping what they sow. Labour MPs should be from the area they represent, not parachuted in.

Corbyn’s manifesto was good. The party should have got behind it and him instead of being forced down a rabbit hole of allegations. If the party does not get back to its roots I fear it will not be here in years to come.

Robert Johnson

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