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Newspaper headlines: ‘Vaccines for all’, and Patel ‘bullying’ row

Newspaper headlines: 'Vaccines for all', and Patel 'bullying' row thumbnail

By BBC NewsStaffPublishedduration1 hour agoimage captionFamilies will be permitted to meet during Christmas, the Daily Telegraph reports, citing government plans due to be announced early next week. Boris Johnson is preparing to announce a UK-wide relaxation of the rules between 22 and 28 December, allowing several families to join in one “bubble”. However, the paper…

By BBC News
Staff

Published

image captionFamilies will be permitted to meet during Christmas, the Daily Telegraph reports, citing government plans due to be announced early next week. Boris Johnson is preparing to announce a UK-wide relaxation of the rules between 22 and 28 December, allowing several families to join in one “bubble”. However, the paper adds that the strength of the restrictions will be dependent on how well the public in England complies with the current lockdown, due to end on 2 December.
image caption“Vaccines for all by Easter in NHS plan” is the headline on the front page of the i weekend and several other papers. A “leaked timetable” has revealed how every age group could be vaccinated. Care home residents, staff and health workers are due to get the jab at the beginning of December, and those age 80 and above by the middle of the month. Meanwhile, 18 to 50-year-olds could get the jab from late January onwards. Those over the age of 50 are being urged to get the free flu jab to keep pressure off the NHS, the paper adds.
image captionAlso leading on the vaccine timetable, the Daily Express reports Health Secretary Matt Hancock’s comments that the jabs will be administerd from next month if approved by the British drugs regulator.
image captionBut despite Mr Hancock’s increasing confidence about the vaccine prospects, union bosses have pointed to the “test and trace fiasco”, the Daily Mirror reports, with unions saying he is unlikely to deliver.
image captionMeanwhile, a “defiant” Mr Johnson told Tory MPs to “form a square” around Priti Patel on Friday after an inquiry found the home secretary had bullied senior officials, the Times reports. Citing two senior Whitehall sources, the paper says Mr Johnson had attempted – and failed – to convince Sir Alex Allan, who carried out the report, to water down his findings. The paper says the PM’s comments rallying around Ms Patel were made in a private WhatsApp group. Sir Alex resigned after his findings were published and Mr Johnson made clear he would not accept them.
image captionMocking up an image of the PM in a clown costume, the Daily Star asks for the last “Bozo adviser” to leave Downing Street to please turn off the lights after a third aide quit No 10 in a week. “At this rate there will be nobody left by Christmas,” the paper adds.
image captionElsewhere, the Daily Mail says Earl Spencer, brother of Princess Diana, has questioned how a BBC inquiry will get to the truth behind the bombshell Panorama interview. An investigation has been launched by the corporation into claims Martin Bashir used forged bank statements to convince Diana to do the now-famous interview in 1995.
image captionThe FT Weekend leads with a report that the UK has spent $500m (£376.4m) of taxpayer money to compete with the likes of Elon Musk and become a global satellite internet provider, taking control of failed start-up OneWeb. The decision to invest in OneWeb has prompted criticism from MPs over the use of taxpayer money.
image captionAnd the Sun leads with reports that Princess Eugenie and her husband Jack Brooksbank have moved into the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s former residence, Frogmore Cottage.

Both the Guardian and the Times compare Boris Johnson’s refusal to sack Priti Patel to his defence of Dominic Cummings’s trip to Barnard Castle during the first lockdown.

For the Times, the prime minister has again expended political capital by standing by a wounded colleague whom he may yet have to dismiss if further damaging details emerge.

According to the Guardian, No 10’s determination to “brazen out” the row is another sign that Mr Johnson sees following the rules as unnecessary for “his gang”.

The Daily Star also weighs in, asking what it would take to get sacked from this government.

However, the Sun argues that Labour’s “indignation is a sham”.

Fair enough, it says, that Ms Patel has apologised if some staff felt they were being bullied – rather than being urged to “raise their game”.

But some bosses, it says, are highly effective while being demanding and blunt – and the home secretary has been busy “shaking up” a “dysfunctional” department.

The Daily Mail agrees. It says no one should condone bullying in the workplace.

But Ms Patel’s job requires passion – and not “haughty Sir Humphreys deploying every trick to impede demanding, but popular, policies”.

A number of front pages celebrate the prospect of what the i weekend bills as “Vaccines for all by Easter”.

A leaked timetable has revealed that care home residents and staff, health workers, and people over 80 could get the Pfizer jab, if it is approved, next month.

The Daily Mail reports that the 14-day quarantine rule for people arriving in Britain from most countries will be eased next week.

The paper says ministers have approved a plan to cut the isolation time to just five days, after which travellers would face tests for the virus that return results within an hour.

A Whitehall source tells the Mail the move could “make a huge difference” to the aviation and travel industries.

Although Donald Trump continues to resist Joe Biden’s victory in the US presidential election, the New York Times reckons that the latest setbacks to his efforts, in Georgia and Michigan, signal a “rapidly vanishing path” for his attempt to stymie the process.

By next Tuesday, it believes, Mr Biden could be officially declared the winner – with Michigan, Pennsylvania and Nevada all facing deadlines to follow Georgia by certifying their results.

According to the Wall Street Journal, an increasing number of senior Republicans are urging Mr Trump to substantiate his allegations of voting fraud – or to concede.

The New York Post reports that the president has accused Pfizer of playing “corrupt games”, claiming it delayed the release of its vaccine data to sink his re-election.

The Daily Telegraph carries the findings of scientists at the University of Exeter, which suggest that plants may be evolving to hide from humans.

The researchers discovered that a type of flower, which is picked for use in Chinese medicine, blends more closely into its surroundings in areas where it is frequently harvested.

The study points to humans driving evolution of the species into new colour forms – because better camouflage offers it a higher chance of survival.

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