(Bloomberg) -- Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said his government is still considering its “next steps” ahead of a deadline imposed by the UK’s official Covid-19 inquiry to hand over former Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s diaries and WhatsApp messages from the pandemic.

The head of the inquiry into how ministers and officials handled the coronavirus outbreak has demanded the government’s response by 4 p.m. on Thursday, and until now, the government has refused to hand over the documents, arguing they are “unambiguously irrelevant” to the investigation. 

The approach has opened Sunak up to accusations that he is attempting to cover up sensitive information, leading to a backlash including from members of his governing Conservative Party. But on Thursday, in a pooled broadcast interview aired shortly the deadline, Sunak hinted that he’s not preparing to accede to the request.

“We’re confident in our position but are carefully considering next steps,” Sunak told broadcasters in Moldova.


©2023 Bloomberg L.P.