TWO Oxfordshire MPs have broken their silence on Dominic Cummings to address constituents' fury with the PM's special adviser.

Banbury MP Victoria Prentis has issued a statement saying that Mr Cummings future in government 'is a matter for the Prime Minister'.

And Wantage MP David Johnston said he would pass on the concerns of constituents to the government but would not make a public comment on Mr Cummings actions.

Both MPs were contacted by the Oxford Mail yesterday for comment on the story about the chief adviser's decision to take a 260-mile trip to his parents' home in Durham, breaking the regulations of the lockdown in place at the time.

Neither replied at the time, but now they have both decided to address the matter. However, Mr Johnston did not reply specifically to the Mail. Instead, constituents have sent us an email he sent them after they complained.

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In an email to constituents, Mr Johnston said: "I completely understand the anger people feel about this issue and the sense that he has not obeyed the rules. I am lucky to have not lost anyone as a result of the virus; a number of you have shared very moving stories of family members you have lost during recent months and I was very sorry to hear these stories. You have my heartfelt condolences."

But he said Mr Cummings had set out his side of the story and that some of the news reports written about him prior to this were 'clearly false'.

Mr Johnston added: "I also know, however, that his explanation has failed to satisfy many of the people who were angry before hearing it; some of you have written to me a second time to make this clear. 

"I have communicated to the Government my personal view and I have also let them know the views of the constituents who have written to me – how many emails I have received and the balance between those of you that are very critical of him (the vast majority) and those who are supportive."

In today's select committee, Boris Johnson was asked which report he was talking about when he called them false. Mr Johnson did not answer the question.

The Wantage MP added he would not be making a statement about whether Mr Cummings should resign, as he had not made any statement when other public figures had been found to break the lockdown.

He said: "Each of them will I’m sure have gone through a very unpleasant period when the allegations were first made and I don’t think it is my job to add to this. I understand this will disappoint some of you.

"It is absolutely right that public figures are held to account. However, when I was a charity Chief Executive, the desire of people to ‘pile on’ in public when a known figure is said to have transgressed always seemed to me to be one of the things that puts people off public life. 

"Even before the facts are known, people have the media hounding them at their homes, high levels of social media abuse and people who’ve never met them giving their opinions in media interviews."

In her statement, Ms Prentis said: "Over the past few days I have received hundreds of emails regarding the actions of Dominic Cummings and his family, with the full range of views represented."

She added that the past few months 'have been very difficult for everyone and really appalling for those who have been very ill or lost family members' and spoke about how she was desperate to visit her own 97-year old grandmother.

On Mr Cummings, she said: "Dominic Cummings is not someone I know. At the weekend he gave a full account of what he had done when he and his wife had suffered symptoms.

"Having had coronavirus myself back in March, I do know how unwell you feel even with average symptoms. I’m sure that it does not make for good decision making. It is clear that many of us would not have taken the same view of the rules as the Cummings family (and indeed did not at the time) but he gave a full explanation of his actions.

"Ultimately whether or not he keeps his job is not a matter for me; it is a matter for the Prime Minister. He has clearly decided that at this moment of national crisis, he needs his advisor to remain in post, and that he is satisfied by his explanation. I do not feel there is any merit in continuing to push this matter any further."

Yesterday, Oxford MPs Anneliese Dodds and Layla Moran said they had been inundated with emails from furious constituents and added the government needed to think about whther keeping Mr Cummings on staff was a wise move.

READ AGAIN about their reaction here

Henley MP John Howell told constituents earlier this week he had no plans to intervene in the debate.

Witney MP Robert Courts said he was satisfied by Mr Cummings explanation of why he had broken the rules of the lockdown.