The President was clear. The snail’s pace roll-out of France’s Covid vaccination programme was unjustified and could not be allowed to continue. “Things must change quickly and substantially,” he said.

Hmm. If only there was someone in high office who could ensure that the programme moved into a higher gear and reached more than a handful of the French people. Someone, say, like Emmanuel Macron, who has been head of state throughout the pandemic and in mid-summer appointed a new prime minister, Jean Castex, specifically to improve the Government’s handling of the crisis.