Chris Whitty criticises Nicki Minaj’s claims about Covid vaccines

Chris Whitty and Boris Johnson today criticised Nicki Minaj for spreading an ‘untrue’ and ‘ridiculous’ myth that coronavirus vaccines can cause impotence – before she responded to the ‘diss’ on social media minutes later.

The Prime Minister said he would rather listen to NHS England’s top GP Nikki Kanani about the jab as he and the Chief Medical Officer both condemned the remarks by the star, who has not yet been vaccinated.

Minaj had been mocked after telling her 22million Twitter followers last night that her cousin will not get the vaccine because his friend allegedly became impotent after being jabbed and his fiancé cancelled their wedding.

The 38-year-old tweeted yesterday: ‘My cousin in Trinidad won’t get the vaccine cuz his friend got it & became impotent. His testicles became swollen. His friend was weeks away from getting married, now the girl called off the wedding. So just pray on it & make sure you’re comfortable with ur decision, not bullied.’ 

Mr Whitty and Mr Johnson both criticised Minaj after being asked about what she said by a reporter during their press conference from Downing Street this afternoon. Minaj then took to Twitter again after watching a video of the two men speaking, saying: ‘I love him even tho I guess this was a diss? The accent ugh! Yassss boo!!!’

Moment later she recorded an audio message for Mr Johnson in a comedic British accent, tweeting: ‘Send this to the Prime Minister and let him know they lied on me. I forgive him. No one else. Only him.’

She said: ‘Yes, hello Prime Minister, Boris, it’s Nicki Minaj – I was just calling to tell you that you were so amazing on the news this morning. And I’m actually British. I was born there. I went to university there. I went to Oxford. 

‘I went to school with Margaret Thatcher. And she told me so many nice things about you. I’d love to send you my portfolio of my work, since you don’t know much about me, I’m a big, big star in the United States.’ 

Minaj then called Laura Kuenssberg a ‘dumbo’ after the BBC News political editor quoted her ‘diss’ tweet, saying: ‘2021 everyone.’ Minaj responded to this message by saying: ‘Yes 2021 when jack asses hang on to my every tweet but can’t decipher sarcasm & humor, and can’t read. Go away dumbo.’ 

Nicki Minaj claimed that her cousin won’t get the vaccine because his friend allegedly became impotent after being jabbed

Chief Medical Officer for England Chris Whitty (left) and Prime Minister Boris Johnson at Downing Street this afternoon

Prime Minister Boris Johnson (left)and Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty (right) speak at Downing Street this afternoon

Minaj was ridiculed over a tweet about her cousin’s friend yesterday which was condemned by Mr Whitty and the PM

Minaj then took to Twitter again today, after watching a video of Mr Whitty and Mr Johnson speaking in London

Moments later Minaj recorded an audio message to Mr Johnson in a comedic British accent

Minaj called Laura Kuenssberg a ‘dumbo’ after the BBC News political editor quoted her ‘diss’ tweet, saying: ‘2021 everyone’

What did Boris Johnson and Chris Whitty say?

Boris Johnson

‘I’m not as familiar with the works of Nicki Minaj as I probably should be, but I am familiar with Nikki Kanani, superstar GP of Bexley who’s appeared many times before you who will tell you that vaccines are wonderful and everybody should get them. So I prefer to listen to Nikki Kanani.’

Chris Whitty

‘There are a number of myths that fly around with varying… some of which are just clearly ridiculous, and some of which are clearly designed just to scare. That happens to be one of them. That is untrue.

‘My own strong suggestion to media present and not present is repeating them in public actually gives them credence which they don’t need. They’re untrue, full stop. If you think about where we are actually overall… the great majority of people are getting vaccinated, so the great majority of people are ignoring these myths.

‘And if you talking about people in their 50s and 60s and 70s, you’re talking about over 90 per cent of people getting vaccinated, and very few people actually are actively in… the anti-vaxx group. There are a few people who’ve got strange beliefs, and fine, and they make their own choices, and in a sense, also fine, people, adults are allowed to make their own choices. However strange that is a basic principle of medical ethics actually.

‘But there are also people who go around trying to discourage other people from taking a vaccine which could be life-saving or prevent them from having life-changing injuries to themselves. And many of those people, I regret to say, I think know they are peddling untruths and, but they still do it. In my view, they should be ashamed. And I’ll leave it at that.’

Nicki Minaj 

‘I love him even tho I guess this was a diss? The accent ugh! Yassss boo!!!’

‘Send this to the Prime Minister and let him know they lied on me. I forgive him. No one else. Only him.’

‘Yes, hello Prime Minister, Boris, it’s Nicki Minaj – I was just calling to tell you that you were so amazing on the news this morning. And I’m actually British. I was born there. I went to university there. 

‘I went to Oxford. I went to school with Margaret Thatcher. And she told me so many nice things about you. I’d love to send you my portfolio of my work, since you don’t know much about me, I’m a big, big star in the United States.’ 

During the press conference, the Prime Minister said: ‘I’m not as familiar with the works of Nicki Minaj as I probably should be.

‘But I am familiar with Nikki Kanani, superstar GP of Bexley who’s appeared many times before you, who will tell you that vaccines are wonderful and everybody should get them. So I prefer to listen to Nikki Kanani.’

And Mr Whitty said: ‘There are a number of myths that fly around with varying… some of which are just clearly ridiculous, and some of which are clearly designed just to scare. That happens to be one of them. That is untrue.

‘My own strong suggestion to media present and not present is repeating them in public actually gives them credence which they don’t need. They’re untrue, full stop.

‘If you think about where we are actually overall… the great majority of people are getting vaccinated, so the great majority of people are ignoring these myths.

‘And if you talking about people in their 50s and 60s and 70s, you’re talking about over 90 per cent of people getting vaccinated, and very few people actually are actively in… the anti-vaxx group.

‘There are a few people who’ve got strange beliefs, and fine, and they make their own choices, and in a sense, also fine, people, adults are allowed to make their own choices. However strange that is a basic principle of medical ethics actually.

‘But there are also people who go around trying to discourage other people from taking a vaccine which could be life-saving or prevent them from having life-changing injuries to themselves.

‘And many of those people, I regret to say, I think know they are peddling untruths and, but they still do it. In my view, they should be ashamed. And I’ll leave it at that.’

Reacting to Mr Whitty’s comments, DailyMail.com US editor-at-large Piers Morgan tweeted: ‘Professor Whitty beefing with the ghastly @NICKIMINAJ (one of the rudest little madams I’ve ever met) is not the breaking news that I expected today – but it’s most welcome. She’s peddling lies that will cost lives.’ 

It comes after Minaj revealed this week that she is unvaccinated and was not moved to receive the jab by the Met Gala’s attendance requirements.

The chart-topping rapper said she caught Covid while preparing for the MTV Video Music Awards, which took place on Sunday.

Guests at the Met Gala – a glamorous event in New York City known as fashion’s biggest night – were reportedly required to be fully vaccinated in order to attend.

Minaj, who pulled out of the VMAs, told fans on Twitter she was still researching vaccines.

She tweeted: ‘They want you to get vaccinated for the Met. if I get vaccinated it won’t for the Met. 

‘It’ll be once I feel I’ve done enough research. I’m working on that now. In the meantime my loves, be safe. Wear the mask with 2 strings that grips your head & face. Not that loose one.’ 

Top Trumps: Nicki Minaj, Boris Johnson and Chris Whitty 

Nick Minaj

Age: 38

Born: Port of Spain – Trinidad and Tobago

Height: 5ft2in

Education: LaGuardia, New York 

Children:

Platinum albums:

Movie credits: 4

General election wins:

Net worth: Estimated £60million 

Previous job: Waitress at Red Lobster

Number of mugs sold with face on: Unknown

Well known phrase: ‘Let’s go to the beach-each. Let’s go get a wave.’

Boris Johnson

Age: 57

Born: New York – United States

Height: 5ft7in

Education: Eton College and Oxford University

Children: ‘At least 6’

Platinum albums: 0

Movie credits: 0

General election wins: 1

Net work: Estimated £1.5million 

Previous job: Editor of The Spectator

Number of mugs sold with face on: Unknown

Well known phrase: ‘Get Brexit Done’ 

Chris Whitty

Age: 55

Born: Gloucester, England

Height: 6ft 2in

Education: Malvern College and Oxford University

Platinum albums: 0

Move credits: 0

General election wins:

Children: 0

Net Worth: Unknown 

Previous job: NHS consultant physician

Number of mugs sold with face on: At least 900

Well known phrase: ‘Next slide please’ 

Minaj, whose son will turn one later this month, said Drake, her close friend and superstar rapper, caught Covid despite being vaccinated.

She said: ‘I was prepping for vmas then i shot a video & guess who got COVID? Do u know what it is not to be able to kiss or hold your tiny baby for over a week? A baby who is only used to his mama? ‘get vaccinated’ Drake had just told me he got covid w|THE VACCINE tho so chile.’

Minaj, who was criticised for her comments, said she would recommend the vaccine for anyone who needed it for work. 

And she said she may need to receive the jab when she starts touring.

In the US, vaccine hesitancy is one of the biggest issues facing Joe Biden’s administration.

Last week the president criticised the roughly 80 million unvaccinated Americans and announced sweeping new vaccine requirements.

There have been more than 41 million confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the US, official figures show, with more than 660,000 deaths.

In Britain, it was announced today that booster Covid vaccines will be offered to millions of people from next week alongside annual flu jabs.

Those eligible include anyone aged 50 and over, people living and working in elderly care homes, and frontline health and social care workers.

All those who are clinically extremely vulnerable and anyone aged 16 to 65 in an at-risk group for Covid will also be eligible for a jab.

Impotence is not listed as a potential side effect of the vaccine on the NHS website.   

The war of words comes as Mr Johnson’s top medical and scientific advisers warned that ‘winter is coming’ and he might need to ‘go early and go hard’ with restrictions today – as the PM said compulsory masks and Covid passports are being ‘kept in reserve’ if booster jabs and vaccines for schoolchildren fails to keep the disease under control.

Fronting a press conference alongside Professor Whitty and Patrick Vallance, the PM insisted that the UK was ‘incomparably’ better placed to deal with the disease this year.

He said he hoped the situation could be kept stable with more jabs and the public behaving sensibly – although ministers have made clear another lockdown cannot be completely ruled out as a ‘last resort’.

But Prof Whitty gave a more downbeat assessment, invoking the famous mantra from hit TV show Game of Thrones by warning that ‘winter is coming’. He said that infections were ‘high’ relative to last year, and the NHS was under ‘extreme pressure’ even though vaccines were helping significantly.

Meanwhile, Sir Patrick seemed to send a thinly-veiled message to Mr Johnson by saying that when it comes to measures to stem cases the lesson was ‘you have to go earlier than you want to, you have to go harder than you want to’.

The premier was addressing the nation just hours after it emerged his mother had died, and thanked people for their condolences.

But his winter plan has alarmed businesses and enraged Tory MPs, who heckled Sajid Javid in the Commons as he said it includes the ‘Plan B’ of making masks compulsory ‘in certain settings’, more working from home and social distancing if the NHS is under threat.

Vaccine passports will stay on the table and could be introduced in England with a week’s notice, even though they will not go ahead from next month as originally intended.

There was a boost for Mr Johnson this evening as cases fell 30 per cent week on week to 26,628 and deaths dropped 12 per cent to to 185 – although hospitalisations were up 2 per cent. 

The Prime Minister said he would rather listen to NHS England’s top GP Nikki Kanani (above)

Chief Medical Officer for England Chris Whitty (left), Prime Minister Boris Johnson (R) and Chief Scientific Adviser Patrick Vallance (C) walk along Downing Street this afternoon

DailyMail.com US editor-at-large Piers Morgan is among those tweeting about the comments

Despite the tough messaging on the need to be cautious, ministers packed into the Cabinet room this morning with no masks as they were briefed on the contents of the plan.

At his press conference in Downing Street, Mr Johnson insisted less drastic changes could control the outbreaks this time.

‘When you’ve got a large proportion, as we have now, with immunity, then smaller changes can make a bigger difference and give us the confidence that we don’t have to go back to the lockdowns of the past,’ he said.

He added: ‘In the meantime, we are confident in the vaccines that have made such a difference to our lives.’

Prof Whitty said the data showed someone in their 30s and unvaccinated was running the same risk as someone in their 70s who is vaccinated.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps is set to provide an update on international travel ahead of the formal review point on October 1 – with hopes he will scrap the traffic light system and announce PCR tests are being phased out. He is expected to say fully-jabbed holidaymakers will be able to rely on lateral flow versions instead.

But as well as making their views obvious about the return of masks, Tory MPs demanded the government gives up more powers to impose restrictions on liberties.

There is also a widening split between the approach in England and Scotland, where Nicola Sturgeon is bringing in Covid passports for nightclubs and large events. The SNP leader also says school pupils will need to wear face coverings indoors until at least the October holidays, and large in-person lectures will not be happening at universities.

NICKI MINAJ’S COVID VACCINE CLAIMS DEBUNKED 

What did she claim?

The 38-year-old rapper said her cousin refused to get jabbed after his friend was vaccinated and suffered ‘swollen testicles’ and impotence.

‘So just pray on it & make sure you’re comfortable with ur decision, not bullied,’ she told fans. 

Is there any truth to the claims?

No. Not a single Covid vaccine currently being distributed is known to cause impotence (erectile dysfunction) or fertility issues.

Medics can be sure of this because nearly 6billion doses have already been administered globally.

Major surveillance schemes are in place around the world to pick up on any side effects or adverse reactions.

There have also been no known reports of swollen testicles after getting the Covid vaccines. 

Even if these problems were happening on a minuscule scale they would be expected to be detected due to the sheer volume of jabs being administered.

What risks do they vaccines carry?

Vaccines do, however, cause a host of common, uncommon and extremely rare side effects, ranging from mild to serious.

Most common side effects include muscle pain, fatigue, headaches, fever and chills and other flu-like symptoms.

In extremely rare cases, adverse reactions can be deadly. 

Side effects include: 

Very Common (may affect more than 1 in 10 people)

  • tenderness, pain, warmth, itching or bruising where the injection is given
  • generally feeling unwell
  • feeling tired (fatigue)
  • chills or feeling feverish
  • headache
  • feeling sick (nausea)
  • joint pain or muscle ache

Common (may affect up to 1 in 10 people)

  • swelling, redness or a lump at the injection site
  • feeling or being sick (vomiting) or diarrhoea
  • flu-like symptoms, such as high temperature, chills, muscle aches, sore throat, runny nose, cough, feeling weak
  • pain in legs or arms
  • low levels of blood platelets (thrombocytopaenia)

Uncommon (may affect up to 1 in 100 people)

  • feeling dizzy
  • sleepiness or feeling low in energy
  • lower appetite
  • abdominal pain
  • enlarged lymph nodes
  • excessive sweating
  • itchy skin or rash

Extremely rare (fewer than 1 in 10,000 people)

  • severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis)
  • blood clots occurring with low levels of platelets (see below)
  • swelling under the skin (angioedema)
  • heart inflammation (myocarditis) 
  • capillary leak syndrome (a condition where fluid leaks from the smallest blood vessels, causing swelling and drop in blood pressure). 
  • Guillain-Barré syndrome (a condition where the immune system damages nerve cells)