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The government lost 16,000 Coronavirus cases because they missed a GCSE-level Microsoft Excel error

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Boris Johnson’s Tories have been slammed for “weapons grade incompetence” after it was revealed that their “world-beating” Test and Trace system somehow managed to miss almost 16,000 positive Coronavirus cases because of a simple Microsoft Excel error that any GCSE IT student could have been able to spot.

Earlier today it was revealed that some 15,841 coronavirus cases, spanning an entire week from September 25th to October 2nd, were not recorded by the government’s Test and Trace system.

The mistake – which means thousands of potentially infected contacts are now roaming around the country completely unaware of their status – has sparked a furious row between Public Health England and the government’s so-called “Testing Tsar“, Dido Harding.

However, it is not the row causing public concern – it is the extraordinarily simple reason behind the government’s latest blunder.

Yes, despite allocating an astonishing £10bn to set up and run what Boris Johnson said would be a “world-beating” test and trace system, the error was caused by the fact that the people running the system don’t appear to have any knowledge as to how Microsoft Excel works.

According to the Daily Mail, the cases were missed because the system’s auto-updating Excel spreadsheet had reached its maximum size – meaning no more cases could be added.

According to the Microsoft website, the total number of columns that can be recorded on any single spreadsheet is 16,384 – a fact that any GCSE-level IT student would be expected to know when troubleshooting a problem.

Responding to the situation, the Work and Pensions Secretary admitted that countless Brits “may well” have been infected because of the error.

The glitch has now been resolved after some absolute genius finally realised they needed to have more than one spreadsheet.

Unsurprisingly, many – including numerous normally pro-Tory media commentators – were quick to ridicule Boris Johnson’s government over their latest, and possibly most ridiculous, demonstration of deadly incompetence:

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Boris Johnson’s government have proved time and time again that they couldn’t pour p*ss out of a boot if the instructions were written on the heel.

Test and Trace has been an unmitigated disaster since day one – and, despite the likes of Cuba and Vietnam having had fully functioning systems in place for months (added to far better Coronavirus statistics than our own), the Tories have still not managed to figure out how to get ours up and running properly.

More than 40,000 Brits have already died, and unless the government can pull their finger out and get Test and Trace functioning, the UK may well be forced into another full lockdown in order to halt the current steady rise in cases.

However, with the government continuing to simply dish out multi-million pound contracts to their party donors rather than the most qualified people for the job, I wouldn’t hold out much hope that things are about to improve any time soon.

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