British Prime Minister Boris Johnson loses 2 ministers in serious battle

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson fought for his political survival on Tuesday after Finance Minister Rishi Sunak and another senior minister abruptly resigned over the latest scandal to plague his administration.

Within minutes of each other, Sunak and Health Secretary Sajid Javid sent resignation letters to Johnson aimed at his ability to run a standards-compliant administration.

Britain's new finance minister, Nadhim Zahawi, leaves 10 Downing Street, in London, Britain, on 5 July 2022.

Britain’s new finance minister, Nadhim Zahawi, leaves 10 Downing Street, in London, Britain, on 5 July 2022.

Johnson quickly appointed former businessman Nadhim Zahawi, the current education secretary, as his new finance minister, signaling his intention to stay in power for as long as possible. Steve Barclay, who was appointed in February to impose discipline in Johnson’s administration, has been moved to the health portfolio.

The resignations came when Johnson apologized for appointing a lawmaker for a role involved in providing pastoral care to his party, even after being informed that the politician was the subject of complaints about sexual misconduct .

File - Steve Barclay, Chief of Staff of Downing Street, arrives at 10 Downing Street, London, UK on 25 May 2022.

File – Steve Barclay, Chief of Staff of Downing Street, arrives at 10 Downing Street, London, UK on 25 May 2022.

So far, they are the only two ministers in the prime minister’s top cabinet who have resigned, with other senior figures voicing support for Johnson. Foreign Minister Liz Truss, who is seen as a leading contender to replace him, said she was “100% behind the prime minister.”

Four other lawmakers left junior government roles while a trade envoy retired and a Conservative Party vice president resigned his post on live television.

The resignations come after months of scandals and missteps, with Johnson hitherto facing criticism over a damning report on parties at his Downing Street home and office that severely breached COVID-19 locks and was fined by police .

There have been other policy U-turns, including a fatal defense by another legislature that violated lobbying rules. Johnson also came under fire for not doing enough to tackle a cost-of-living crisis as many Britons struggled to cope with rising fuel and food prices.

Economists say the country is now heading for a sharp slowdown or possibly a recession. Both Sunak and Javid publicly supported Johnson, but in their letters they said enough is enough.

File - British Finance Minister Rishi Sunak leaves Millbank Studios after a media interview in London, UK, 27 May 2022.

File – British Finance Minister Rishi Sunak leaves Millbank Studios after a media interview in London, UK, 27 May 2022.

Sunak, who allegedly clashed privately with the prime minister over spending, said: “For me to retire as chancellor (of the treasury) while the world suffers the economic consequences of the pandemic, the war in Ukraine and other serious challenges “is a decision I did not take lightly.”

“The public rightly expects the government to act properly, competently and seriously,” he added. “I admit this may be my last ministerial post, but I believe these standards are worth fighting for and that is why I am resigning.”

Sunak won praise for a steady response to the economic turmoil caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, but was badly damaged by revelations that his wife avoided paying taxes in Britain.

British Health Minister Sajid Javid arrives at a weekly cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street in London, UK, 5 July 2022.

British Health Minister Sajid Javid arrives at a weekly cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street, London, UK, 5 July 2022.

Javid said many lawmakers and the public have lost confidence in Johnson’s ability to govern in the national interest.

“It is clear to me that this situation will not change under your leadership – and so you have also lost my trust,” his letter reads.

The pound fell with the resignation of Sunak, but economists said a removal of Johnson could bring the necessary stability and provide a boost for the pound and the markets in the medium term.

Excuse me

The resignations came minutes after Johnson went on television to apologize for the appointment of lawmaker Christopher Pincher in a role involved in presenting pastoral care in the Conservative Party, his latest public remorse for his mistakes.

“I apologize to everyone who was badly affected,” Johnson told broadcasters. “I just want to make it absolutely clear that there is no place in this government for anyone who is a predator or who abuses their position of power.”

Pincher’s resignation last Thursday caused days of a changing story from Downing Street about what the prime minister knew about the deputy chief whip’s behavior and when he knew it.

Earlier Tuesday, after a former top official accused Johnson’s office of lying, the prime minister’s spokesman was forced to a quick turnaround to say the British leader had been informed of the matter in “some form” but had forgot about it last week.

For many in the ruling party, another allegation of lies and the explanation for a loss of memory only increased their frustration with the Johnson administration, which according to some lawmakers was paralyzed by dealing with scandals.

Some Conservative lawmakers are trying to renew efforts to oust him, just a month after the prime minister survived a no-confidence vote, while others have earlier called on his cabinet ministers to take action against Johnson.

“He is done,” said one formerly loyal Conservative lawmaker on condition of anonymity. “He must not prolong the pain. It is disrespectful to his colleagues, his party and his country.”

Another previously loyal lawmaker agreed: “It’s all over. I’d be surprised if he’s holding out until the summer now.”

But some party veterans said Johnson – who according to his closest associates is enjoying a fight – could continue and hope to restore his administration.

Labor opposition leader Keir Starmer said those who supported Johnson were complicit in how he did his job.

“After all the sleaze, the scandals and the failure, it is clear that this government is now collapsing,” he said.

This article is republished from – Voa News – Read the – original article.

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