Former Health Secretary Matt Hancock accused of derailing the Vaccine Taskforce out of spite

Image - Matt Hancock: LINGTREN.COM/shutterstock

Image - Matt Hancock: LINGTREN.COM/shutterstock

Kate Bingham, former head of the UK’s Vaccine Taskforce, has accused former health secretary Matt Hancock of derailing Britain’s vaccine procurement out of spite, after he was allegedly “aggrieved” to not be leading the scheme himself. 

Bingham accused Sajid David’s predecessor of trading “Dr Jekyll for Mr Hyde” during a critical Cabinet committee meeting held in summer of 2020, as reported by The Telegraph

Appointed head of Britain’s vaccine procurement, Bingham expressed fears that if she was treated as a politician’s “punching bag”, that a “real risk” could be posed to the vaccine project’s critical mission of preventing and managing the covid-19 outbreak.

Looking back on the 2020 Cabinet confrontation, in which Hancock allegedly insisted Bingham explain how she knew people in their 40s wouldn’t “demand” a Covid jab, she now describes it as “pure politics” from Hancock who was eager to reclaim responsibility over the Taskforce himself.  

Ahead of the publication of her forthcoming pandemic memoir, Bingham also shared with Mail on Sunday readers that prior to the Cabinet meeting she had had what she describes as a “friendly” conversation with Hancock in which she felt reassurance and advice were intended by his comments. 

This only made what she calls his “tirade” of criticism directed towards her all the more surprising, especially in the presence of Michael Gove, former Education Secretary and Alok Sharma, the COP 26 full time president. 

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Image - Annie Dabb
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Annie Dabb

From Newcastle originally, Annie is based in Manchester and is a writer for the Euro Weekly News covering news and features. Got a story you want to share? Then get in touch at