Emotional DUP man Jim Shannon cried at Tory lockdown party

A DUP MP said he was feeling “raw” after shedding tears in the House of Commons, while questioning the government about the latest revelations that it had broken lockdown rules.

Her feelings for Strangford MP Jim Shannon flowed as she told fellow lawmakers how her mother-in-law had died alone with Covid during the pandemic.

Mr Shannon was attempting to obtain an assurance that the findings of an investigation into reports of a “bring-your-own-booz” event in Downing Street during the first lockdown in May 2020 would be made public, which involved about 100 people.

Anticipating the question, Government Minister Michael Ellis said he was “very sorry” for Mr Shannon’s loss. Turning to lawmakers, he said: “He is asking me whether the results of the investigation will be made public, and they will be.”

Mr Shannon’s question comes a week after Northern Ireland reached the milestone of 3,000 Covid-related deaths.

“My family’s experience is one of those many, and even today other MPs in the House share their stories of loss,” he said.

“Our situation is no different to that of many others across the UK who have experienced this loss. The pain of losing a loved one was multiplied in many cases as rules allowed families to be with a loved one in their final hours. Or was prevented from performing the last rites in the usual way.

“People need to be reassured that there will be full and complete disclosure to the ongoing investigation. No one can be above the rules.”

DUP veteran’s mother-in-law Jemima George of Newtownards passed away on October 17, 2020 at the age of 82 at Ulster Hospital in Dundonald.

Mr Shannon spoke about the absence of her family and the sadness felt by loved ones who were unable to “sit with her and hold her hand” as she slipped away.

At the same time Mrs George’s daughter Roberta – the sister of his wife Sandra – was also hospitalized with COVID, but was kept in the same ward, “finally could not see her mother”.

“It was very difficult for Roberta,” said Mr. Shannon.

“They were both in rooms adjacent to the same ward of Ulster Hospital. Jemima was seriously ill and so was Roberta, who had breathing problems 10 days before her admission and was on oxygen the entire time.

“Covid is the most intolerable, dreadful disease. It takes full opportunity to connect with your loved ones away from you. Just imagine someone like Jemima lying on her bed and no one in her family can go to see her.”

Mr Shannon’s personal intervention sparked an emotional connect with his fellow lawmakers, who rounded up in support.

SDLP leader Colm Eastwood said: “Well done, Jim for struggling through that question.”

Paymaster General Michael Ellis, who responded to an urgent question on the government’s behalf from Labor about the report, said he was “very sorry for his loss”.

Labor MP Afzal Khan spoke of “Eid” after his mother died alone in hospital in March 2020.

Manchester Gorton MP said: “Even under the burden of our misery, my family followed the rules. Just three days after the Downing Street party we celebrated a solemn Eid, the first without my dear mother.

“When asked by Sky News about the parties, the Prime Minister did nothing but smile and laugh. He should be here today, but as he is not, can the minister confirm whether the Prime Minister not only because of hosting these parties, but also for my anguish, pain and anguish for lying about it Like apologizing to the bereaved families? ,

Alliance Party legislator Kelly Armstrong tweeted her condolences to the Strangford legislator: “My thoughts are with Jim Shannon and his family. I’m so sorry Jim.

“Losing a loved one is devastating. Losing a loved one when the rules of separation mean they have lived alone is terrifying. COVID robs many of the opportunity to be with one person in their last days.”

And DUP leader Doug Beatty said his views were with Mr Shannon and that the prime minister should step down “if, or once, it is proven”.

Mr Shannon’s question came as Labor MP Angela Renner posed an urgent question to question the government on the latest allegations.

At the time, COVID rules meant Britons in England could only meet one person from outside their domestic bubble at a time.

Former Scottish Tories leader Ruth Davidson said: “People are (rightfully) angry. They sacrificed so much – visiting sick or bereaved relatives, funerals.”

The Met Police said it was aware of reports of lockdown-breaking behavior and the force was “in touch” with the Cabinet Office on this.