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Sir Patrick Vallance hits back at Rishi Sunak over claim covid scientists were too 'empowered'

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Sir Patrick Vallance has hit back at Rishi Sunak's suggestion that scientists were too "empowered" during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The former chief scientific adviser rebuffed that idea, in his witness statement to the Covid-19 Inquiry.The Prime Minister made the remarks in an interview with The Spectator during last summer's Tory leadership contest. "We shouldn't have empowered the scientists in the way we did.

And you have to acknowledge trade-offs from the beginning."If we'd done all of that, we could be in a very different place," he told the magazine.

Sir Patrick, responding to an inquiry question about whether decision-makers relied too heavily on Sage scientists, said: "It is unclear to me what empowerment is being referred to."Science advisers advise and ministers decide.

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