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2 Mar, 2020 13:56

‘Wash your hands to the national anthem’: Rees-Mogg mocked online after giving patriotic coronavirus advice to UK public (VIDEO)

‘Wash your hands to the national anthem’: Rees-Mogg mocked online after giving patriotic coronavirus advice to UK public (VIDEO)

Jacob Rees-Mogg has been royally ridiculed on Twitter after telling the public to keep “coughs and sneezes” in their “handkerchiefs” and sing the UK national anthem while washing their hands to counter the spread of coronavirus.

The leader of the House of Commons was asked by reporters in London on Monday whether the UK government had “got a grip” on Covid-19, more commonly known as the coronavirus. True to fashion, the posh Etonian gave a somewhat eccentric reply that could easily have been issued by an official spokesperson for Queen Elizabeth II.

Coughs and sneezes spread diseases, keep it in your handkerchief – that’s the message. Coughs and sneezes spread...wash your hands to the national anthem.

It comes as Public Health England (PHE) said that the widespread transmission of the virus in the UK is now “highly likely.” The number of cases in the UK has jumped to 40, after 13 new patients were diagnosed on Sunday - including Scotland’s first confirmed patient - and four on Monday.

Rees-Mogg’s advice – laced with a dollop of patriotism and aristocratic etiquette for good measure – has been widely criticized on Twitter. One person claimed that “nobody under 67 owns a hankie,” adding that “I may have forgotten the words to the national anthem. I’m doomed.”

Others responded to the Tory minister’s remarks by cheekily suggesting the UK government was “in the grip of Moronavirus.” There were even some humorous re-workings of Rees-Mogg’s health advice poem: “Coughs and sneezes spread diseases. Lies and delay spreads decay.”

However, some couldn’t hold back their anger, with one person calling Rees-Mogg a “pompous prat” and another claiming the government “couldn’t care less.”

Boris Johnson’s spokesperson said the prime minister chaired a COBRA meeting on Monday morning in which a “UK-wide action plan” was agreed to tackle the coronavirus and which will be published on Tuesday.

Also on rt.com Tourist on board coronavirus cruise ship ‘Diamond Princess’ becomes 1st British death from outbreak

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