IAN Blackford has said that calling Boris Johnson a “clown” is “rather mild”.

The SNP MP’s comments come after it was revealed that the UK Government has written off £9.9bn of the £13.6bn it spent on personal protective equipment (PPE) in the pandemic.

Sky News reported that this was due to the gear being unusable or having lost its value.

Blackford said it showed a “monumental failure” of leadership.

He added in a comment on Twitter/X: “Of course, the mismanagement of test and trace needs to be added to this.

“No wonder some folk referred to the failures of Boris Johnson and frankly referring to him as a clown, and an expensive one, is rather mild.”

The UK Covid enquiry heard on Thursday that Nicola Sturgeon branded Boris Johnson a “f****** clown” in a series of messages during the then prime minister’s “f****** excruciating” announcement of a second national lockdown for England.

WhatsApp messages between the former Scottish first minister and her then chief of staff Liz Lloyd also show Sturgeon saying the Scottish Government did “not get nearly enough credit for how much better than them we are”.

The messages were revealed as Lloyd, described as one of Sturgeon’s closest confidantes, gave evidence to the UK Covid-19 Inquiry on Thursday.

They show Sturgeon blasted Mr Johnson for his “utter incompetence”, saying it was “offending me on behalf of politicians everywhere”.