British Prime Minister Boris Johnson earlier on Wednesday apologized for attending a “bring your own wine” gathering at his official residence during the coronavirus lockdown, as opponents said he had to resign.
Johnson first admitted he attended the Downing Street party on May 20, 2020, when social gatherings were reduced to a minimum, and said he understood the anger that led to the revelation.
Johnson told parliament: “I know how angry they feel with me over the government I lead when they feel the rules are not being followed properly by the rule makers in Downing Street itself. being done.”
Johnson, who won his 2019 election on a promise to secure Britain’s exit from the European Union, said he regretted his action and thought the gathering was a work event – a joke from opposition lawmakers.
“I went to that garden after six o’clock on May 20, 2020, before going back to my office to continue work after 25 minutes to thank the groups of employees,” he said. “After all, I should have sent everyone back in.”
Johnson demands resignation
Leader of the Opposition Keir Starmer said Johnson should resign now and the public thought he was a liar.
“The party is over, Prime Minister,” Starmer told him.
“After months of deceit and deceit, the pitiful spectacle of a man who has been driven off the street. His defense that he didn’t realize he was at a party is so ridiculous as to actually be offensive to the British public.”
Anger has grown since ITV News reported that Johnson and partner Carey mingled with about 40 employees in Downing Street Gardens when their Principal Private Secretary, Martin Reynolds, sent an email invitation asking attendees to ” were asked to bring their own wine”.
In contrast to the Downing Street events, many, including some lawmakers, have described how the rules kept them away from the beds of loved ones who died last May.
Some Conservative members of Parliament, Johnson’s own, have said how he reacts to the growing uproar will determine whether he can stay in office.
‘Existence is in limbo’
“His existence is in limbo at the moment,” a senior Conservative legislator said on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the situation.
More than half of respondents in two Snap opinion polls on Tuesday thought Johnson should resign.
But when parliament resonated with demands for his head, Johnson’s biographer Andrew Gimson said he was unlikely to step down unless forced by his parliamentary colleagues.
“He must be looking for a way through it. He’s not the resigned type,” Gimson said.
When details of the gathering first surfaced, Johnson said he could not comment until a senior government official, Sue Grey, had finished an internal investigation into other allegations that he and his officials had tried to break the rules. Organized parties.
In response to calls for his resignation, he again deferred to Gray’s investigation.
“I can’t predict the conclusion of the current investigation. I’ve learned enough to know that there were some things we didn’t get right. And I should take responsibility,” he said.
Just two years after Johnson’s election victory, and less than six after leading the Brexit campaign to victory in the 2016 EU referendum, speculation about his leadership is now rife.
There is murmur that Conservative MPs, who could trigger a leadership challenge if they write 54 out of 360 no-confidence letters in parliament, are sharpening their knives.
Last month, the Conservatives lost a parliamentary seat they had held for nearly 200 years, while opinion polls showed the party’s comfortable lead over Labor also evaporated.
A series of missteps and scandals and public anger over the government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, rising energy bills and rising inflation concerns have fueled conservative unease.