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PM must not make promises he can't keep

Column by Callum Sutton, a student of Grantham King's School

Promises are something that we have held sacred for a long time.

The origins of a promise can be stemmed back to religious oaths made in the name of an almighty power, condemning people to a life of sin of they were to break them.

Callum Sutton (10893551)
Callum Sutton (10893551)

Promises in different cultures all have one common underlying denominator. They are a sign of loyalty and respect from one person to another.

Nowadays – not so much.

With the dawning of a new prime-ministerial age gracing the country, so comes the tradition of a shopping list of promises being racked up by the PM and newly appointed cabinet.

Some of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s promises include 20 hospitals getting a share of £850m, 20,000 extra police within the next three years and a £4.6bn boost per year to schools by 2023. Fantastic news!

Except. Is it?

The promises made by the new PM and his cabinet are nothing more than what they hope to achieve. Yet these prosperous promises bring with them a much deeper, negative undertone.

With each new Prime Minister we get, these promises follow. But the truth of the matter is, these promises are almost never kept.

As I said before, in this country culturally, and in many countries around the world, we have always held promises as a sign of loyalty and respect. So, when a PM makes a plethora of promises to the people he owes the greatest of services to, and then never delivers on them – what more could a Prime Minister do to disrespect and disregard the people who put him there in the first place?

When Johnson has come out saying he plans to give 20 hospitals a share of £850m, he is not only plucking numbers off his non-existent money tree, he is raising the hopes of thousands of desperate people that rely on the NHS each year to give them the quality of life that they deserve.

He’s lying to cancer patients that have to be placed on month-long waiting lists for CT scans, he is lying to the elderly that are having life-changing operations postponed until further notice and he is lying to the person on the end of the phone being told they will have to wait three hours for an ambulance.

He is not only lying to these people, he’s insulting them.

I can’t change Johnson’s actions directly, or even hope that anything I say will ever make it to his ears. However, Mr Johnson, before you rattle out more promises please take into account the livelihood of this country’s people. Take into account the service you owe them.

And whilst you are sitting on your £160,000 salary, think of the people struggling with the consequences made by your decisions.

Don’t make promises if you are only going to break them.

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