England’s chief medical officer has dismissed rapper Nicki Minaj’s tweet linking the Covid vaccine to impotency as “untrue”.
Professor Chris Whitty said her claims were “clearly designed just to scare”.
Meanwhile, prime minister Boris Johnson said he would rather listen to top NHS England GP Nikki Kanani about the jab.
Prof Whitty told a Downing Street press conference: “There are a number of myths that fly around... 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.”
What did Nicki Minaj say?
Minaj had caused a stir on Twitter after talking about her cousin’s friend’s swollen testicles after getting the Covid jab.
Minaj, who was born in Trinidad and Tobago, had previously tweeted: “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.”
In fact, experts say that Covid itself is more likely to impact sperm count than the jab.
Chris Whitty criticises people peddling ‘untruths’
Whitty said many people know they are peddling “untruths” and added: “In my view, they should be ashamed. And I’ll leave it at that.”
He said repeating myths in public “just gives them credence which they don’t need”.
“They’re untrue, full stop,” he added.
Johnson 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.”
But it didn’t end there
The popstar responded just minutes after the end of the press conference, tweeting: “I love him even tho I guess this was a diss? The accent ugh! Yassss boo!!!”
Minaj then followed it up with another tweet that featured a recording in which she mimics a British accent, saying: “Yes, hello prime minister Boris, it’s Nicki Minaj.
“I was just calling to tell you that I thought 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.”
And it wasn’t the pop star’s last encounter on Tuesday with well-known British names.
As much of British Twitter reslished quote tweeting Minaj, she called the BBC’s political editor Laura Kuenssberg “dumbo”.
Kuenssberg had shared a tweet from Minaj adopting a British accent, and wrote: “2021 everyone …”
In response, the rap star said: “Yes 2021 when jack asses hang on to my every tweet but can’t decipher sarcasm & humor, and can’t read. Go away dumbo.”
And she dismissed Piers Morgan’s suggestion they knew each after the broadcaster said she was “one of the rudest little madams I’ve ever met”.
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.”
Minaj responded: “Sir I’ve never met you. I know… we all look alike.”
She went on: “‘Rudest little madam’. I like it. Has a special ring to it. Thanks Pierce (sic). Love the accent. I’d love to come chat. Scones. Tea. Clown nose & big red shoes for you. Lmk babe.”