April 18, 2024 - 7:00pm

A Labour MP has praised Sweden’s Covid-19 pandemic response, saying that Britain should have looked to the Nordic country as it “came out the best of the countries in Europe in terms of deaths”.

Graham Stringer MP made the comments during a debate in the House of Commons this afternoon on the UK’s pandemic response and trends in excess deaths.

The 74-year-old, who has been the MP for Blackley and Broughton since 1997, criticised the Government’s management of the pandemic, which he labelled “irrational”. He compared the UK’s response to Sweden’s, which only restricted personal freedoms in a “moderate way”.

Stringer is also chair of the all-party group on “examining the impact of the Government’s pandemic policy”, which he says has shown him that “science and politics make very uneasy bedfellows”.

He then suggested that, instead of a nationwide lockdown, the Government should only have locked down the vulnerable, including the elderly and those with existing medical conditions, stating that “the science wasn’t followed”.

Stringer went on to criticise “the mainstream media”, which he claimed did not hold the Government to account during the pandemic. He added that it was “uncritical of what was happening”, singling out the BBC which he says “was not asking the difficult questions”.

During the pandemic, Stringer was the only Labour MP to vote against implementing a stricter lockdown in the North West, and has previously claimed that lockdowns may have been worse than Covid itself.

The Government’s Covid-19 inquiry, according to Stringer, showed an “extraordinary bias towards believing in lockdowns” and he expressed his belief that he didn’t think it was the correct body to prepare society for the next pandemic.

The inquiry involves looking into the Government’s own response and the effectiveness of lockdown measures. In March, a group of scientists signed a letter to the inquiry chairman, Baroness Hallett, suggesting that the inquiry was “fundamentally biased” and was failing to examine the full scope of lockdown.

is UnHerd’s Editorial Trainee.