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Javid and Sunak resign as Johnson moves quickly to appoint Barclay and Zahawi

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak.

Rishi Sunak has said he is resigning as Chancellor, shortly after Cabinet colleague Health Secretary Sajid Javid’s resignation announcement.

Earlier, Prime Minister Boris Johnson denied lying to aides about his knowledge of allegations against Chris Pincher.

Downing Street said Nadhim Zahawi will replace Rishi Sunak as Chancellor, and Michelle Donelan will replace Zahawi as Education Secretary.

Steve Barclay will replace Sajid Javid as Health Secretary.

The Scottish Secretary has said he still backs Boris Johnson remaining in Downing Street.

MP Alister Jack said: “I fully support the Prime Minister. I am sorry to see good colleagues resign, but we have a big job of work to do, and that’s what we’re getting on with.”

Raising concerns about the way in which government is being managed both Sunak and Javid said they could no longer uphold the government “in good conscience”.

No 10 spokespeople and ministers have given a series of differing explanations about what Mr Johnson’s knowledge of the situation over Chris Pincher had been.

Properly, competently and seriously

Mr Sunak wrote on Twitter: “The public rightly expect government to be conducted properly, competently and seriously.

“I recognise this may be my last ministerial job, but I believe these standards are worth fighting for and that is why I am resigning”.

In a letter to the prime minister, the health secretary told Boris Johnson that the British people “rightly expect integrity from their Government”.

Mr Javid wrote: “The tone you set as leader, and the values you represent, reflect on your colleagues, your party and ultimately the country.

“Conservatives at their best are seen as hard-headed decision makers, guided by strong values. We may not have always been popular, but we have been competent in acting in the national interest.

“Sadly, in the current circumstances, the public are concluding that we are now neither.”

Conservative MP Virginia Crosbie has quit her role as parliamentary private secretary at the Welsh Office, stating she “cannot continue to defend” the Prime Minister’s actions.

Posting her resignation on Facebook, the Ynys Mon MP wrote: “I am forced to say that the sheer number of allegations of impropriety and illegality -many of them centred around Downing St and your premiership- is simply making your position untenable.

“I am of the view that if you continue in office you risk irrevocably harming this government and the Conservative party and will hand the keys of Downing Street to the Labour Party unfit to govern.

“The inaccurate and contradictory statements over what you knew about the former Deputy Chief Whip’s conduct before you appointed him was the last straw. I cannot continue to defend your actions to my Ynys Môn constituents who are rightly very angry.

“I have no idea what is happening at Downing Street but it appears you are either badly advised or unable to change or reform the dysfunctional operation at the centre of the government you lead.”

 

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