Lady Gaga and Boris Johnson. (Getty/Global Citizen/Ray Tang/Anadolu Agency)
An explosive article in today’s Sunday Times revealed that UK prime minister Boris Johnson skipped the first five crisis meetings about coronavirus – meanwhile, Lady Gaga raised $127m for the COVID-19 relief effort and curated a global star-studded concert.
Johnson, whose poor handling of the pandemic to date is the subject of the Sunday Times’ long and comprehensive piece, missed the first meeting of the UK’s national crisis committee – which was on the same day that the UK’s withdrawal treaty from the European Union was signed.
He then skipped the next four Cobra meetings about coronavirus – meetings that the UK prime minister would usually chair – first attending the crisis committee on March 2.
As the Times reports, this was five whole weeks after that first meeting, and “by then it was almost certainly too late.”
However, all is not lost.
While the UK prime minister was spending the February half-term break on holiday at a country house in Kent with his fiancée, Carrie Symonds, Lady Gaga was getting organised.
$127.9 million for COVID-19 relief.
That is the power and impact of One World: #TogetherAtHome.
Thank you @ladygaga for helping @GlblCtzn create this historic global broadcasting event.
To everyone around the world: Stay strong, stay safe, we will be together in person soon. pic.twitter.com/QudE6j7reF
— Global Citizen (@GlblCtzn) April 19, 2020
The acclaimed singer-songwriter has been widely praised for curating the April 18 One World: Together at Home virtual concert special, as well as for her work raising funds for the World Health Organization’s (WHO) COVID-19 efforts.
Before the concert, she raised $35 million by personally phoning wealthy philanthropists and corporations and asking them to donate, to help frontline healthcare workers in the fight against coronavirus.
It’s been reported that the star created a “war room” at her home in order to coordinate both parting rich individuals from their cash in aid of the greater good, and to curate the massive global concert.
Created by Lady Gaga with Global Citizen, the call sheet for One World boasted a ridiculously talented roster of more than 100 stars including The Rolling Stones, Taylor Swift, Sam Smith, Ellen DeGeneres, Celine Dion, Oprah Winfrey, Alicia Keys, Camila Cabello and Victoria Beckham.
Gaga has been widely praised for her work – so much so that her fans are now calling on her to be given the Nobel Peace Prize.
And today, Global Citizen announced that the historic event had raised $127.9 million for COVID-19 relief.
Speaking at a press conference earlier this month, Gaga said: “We are all so very grateful to all of the healthcare professionals across the country and the world who are on the front lines during COVID-19.”
Not only did Gaga delay the release of her sixth album, Chromatica, to fight the pandemic, the star also spent her birthday on the phone to the head of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
“She is ready to support WHO in any way possible in the fight against COVID-19. Together!” Ghebreyesus later said.
Perhaps Boris Johnson could ask Lady Gaga to be his representative at the next Cobra meeting? It seems unlikely she’d refuse.