Shadow justice minister and Tottenham Labour MP David Lammy has slammed climate Tory tsar Alok Sharma’s travel schedule.
Sharma, who is set to lead vital climate crisis talks at Cop26 in Glasgow in November, has warned “human behaviour is alarmingly accelerating global warming”
He was criticised for flying to 30 countries in seven months without quarantining upon his return to the UK.
One rule for them, another for us
Among critics was Lammy, who told Sky News: “The optics are very clear, it’s one rule for them and another rule for us, whether it’s Dominic Cummings, whether it’s Matt Hancock, whether it’s Alok Sharma.
“I got to say, look, of course some international travel is required but this amount of international travel when your climate change minister feels to be bizarre and feels to not be setting the example, particularly when there’s quite widespread criticism of Britain’s response to Cop just 100 days to go.
“I think this is worrying but it’s more of a same from a government that really feels like the rules do not apply to them and their ministers and their class and groups of friends.”
#KayBurley – Alok Sharma has been to 30 countries & hasn’t quarantined on his return… how do the optics look?— Haggis_UK ?? ?? (@Haggis_UK) August 6, 2021
David Lammy – The optics are very clear, it’s one rule for them & another for us… this govt feel the rules don’t apply to them & there groups of friends. pic.twitter.com/StYIWCPC6e
It comes as foreign secretary Dominic Raab was also criticised in a newspaper report for allegedly avoiding quarantine rules upon his return to the UK from France.
But the government has insisted the Tory minister acted within the Covid rules it set regarding travel quarantine.
According to the Sunday Mirror, Raab reportedly dodged the rules by failing to self-isolate late last month.
At the time, UK arrivals from France had to quarantine for 10 days.
But the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) told the newspaper that Raab acted within the rules.
Government ministers set rules which let them to skip travel quarantine
This means government ministers can skip quarantine if they go on essential business trips abroad, even in red list countries.
But people arriving from red list countries have to self-isolate for 10 days in a government-approved hotel – and the price is set to hike from £1,750 to £2,285 per person from 12 August.
On Friday, Boris Johnson’s spokesperson said the prime minister will not have to quarantine despite the fact that a member of the team accompanying him to Scotland this week tested positive for Covid.
And last month, Boris Johnson abandoned plans to avoid quarantine after being contacted by NHS Test and Trace following backlash.
In June, former health secretary Matt Hancock was accused of breaking his own Covid social distancing rules, after images emerged of him kissing his close government aide .
Hancock has been accused of “Tory Hypocrisy” for criticising Sage government adviser Professor Neil Ferguson over breaching lockdown last year to have an affair.
In May 2020, the health secretary claimed Professor Ferguson had an “extraordinary” behaviour which left him “speechless”.