By now, a Boris Johnson appearance is guaranteed to result in some bizarre quote or confusing detail.
His stint in front of the government liaison committee on Wednesday was no different; during the session – in which Johnson was grilled by a cross-party selection of senior MPs – the prime minister seemed not to be aware of the infamous ‘no recourse to public funds’ rule for migrants, laughed when asked about the gender equality and asked people to “move on” from the Dominic Cummings debacle.
He also mentioned ‘Dido’ a lot.
So much in fact that some began to think the name ‘Dido’ was a codeword.
Examining Dido’s back catalogue also turned up some relevant hits.
Dido is in charge of test, track, and trace? https://t.co/CFr3OG567Z
— rocco’s not alive (@rocco’s not alive)
Even other MPs got stuck in with the gags.
PM discussing Dido a lot at Liason Committee, which is good as she wrote the Tory strategy for getting through the… https://t.co/B7FtRxiCsq
— Stewart McDonald MP (@Stewart McDonald MP)
However, the identity of the actual Dido that Johnson was referring to is a little less glamorous.
He was talking about Baroness Dido Harding, a Tory peer who has been appointed to oversee the new NHS track and trace programme.
Harding’s name might be familiar – she was the former CEO of telecoms company TalKTalk who presided over the company during a major cyber attack that saw 160,000 customers have bank details and credit card numbers exposed.
Harding was criticised in the wake of the incident for taking an increased salary, despite profits at the company being halved as a result of the data breach.
Harding is also on the board of the Jockey Club, the body that was forced to defend its decision to allow Cheltenham Festival go ahead during the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.
These details did not go unnoticed as it was announced Harding would be leading a project that seeks to handle millions of personal details from UK citizens in order to stop the spread of coronavirus.
Dido Harding has been appointed to lead the programme of testing and tracing as part of the govt. ongoing response… https://t.co/z4tE1vi71B