Proceedings at the UK Covid Inquiry have been gripping the nation this week.

Yesterday, one of our readers complained that too much attention is focused on the Scottish Government’s WhatsApp messages, while another complained about the comparisons that were being drawn between Boris Johnson and Nicola Sturgeon

Read more: Are we really comparing Johnson and Sturgeon? Seriously?

Today, a correspondent address both of those points with an excoriating analysis of his own. 

Alasdair Sampson of Stewarton writes: 

"W Thompson (Letters, January 24) undoubtedly is absolutely correct that the UK Covid Inquiry is not following its remit to examine the UK’s response to and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. Instead, it focuses on WhatsApp messages, private emails and minutes of meetings. 

"So, too, is Stan Grodynski (Letters, January 24) absolutely correct that too many seem intent on scurrilously attempting falsely to equate the modus operandi of former FM Sturgeon and former PM Johnson, two radically different leaders. 

"But both studiously avoid rather than inadvertently miss the point. 

"For a large part of the time Mr Johnson was suffering from Covid and its longer-term effects. Never a details man at the best of times, it hardly helped. But Mr Johnson stated at the outset of the inquiry that his private messages should be made available. 

"And it is precisely because the UK Inquiry was eventually able to winkle out these and other private messages of those ruling us at UK level that we got closer to knowing the true background, including the infamous comment 'let the bodies pile high' attributed to Boris Johnson. 

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"So feted for her grasp of detail, Nicola Sturgeon was 'unable to recall' (and variations thereof) to respond to 100-plus questions put to her at the Salmond committee hearings in March 2021 which found 5:4 that she had misled parliament. 

"Contrary to her promises on TV (C4 News, August 2021) that she would make all her WhatsApp, private emails and minutes available to the inquiry, we now know that was not truthful. 

"But it is precisely because the inquiry is focusing on these messages that we now know Jason Leitch told Humza Yousaf how to get round the rules; that Ms Sturgeon told Devi Sridhar how to get round protocols in messaging.

"And we now know from minutes of meetings prised from SNP fingers that Ms Sturgeon, on the very day she castigated a journalist for daring to ask if she was using Covid for political gain, had discussed at a meeting how to re-boot the independence campaign in the middle of and using the pandemic chaos. 

"So, yes, both Mr Thompson and Mr Grodynski are correct that the inquiry is wasting its time focusing on the private messaging of those in charge. Hopefully, however, the relatives of those bereaved and electorate at large will be asking ever more loudly and persistently why the inquiry is having to do so."