Boris Johnson ‘toxic’ even to his allies, says Malcom Rifkind
Boris Johnson is “taking charge” of his Downing Street operation, a government minister claimed as a fifth aide walked out of No 10 in the space of 24 hours.
According to Conservative Home, Elena Narozanski, a former adviser to the cabinet minister Michael Gove and Theresa May during her tenure as home secretary, quit her role in the Downing Street policy unit.
Her exit follows the departures of Jack Doyle, communications director, Martin Reynolds, principle private secretary and Dan Rosenfield, chief of staff, and Munira Mirza, head of policy.
Greg Hands, the energy minister, said on Friday: “The prime minister was absolutely clear on Monday that there would be changes at the top of No 10 and that is what he has delivered.”
Reports say that Ms Mirza’s shock resignation sparked a clear out of No 10 as the PM tried to take back control of events.
DUP leader says party has been ‘very patient’
Sir Jeffrey Donaldson has said that his party has been “very patient” around talks on the Northern Ireland Protocol.
The DUP leader was speaking to RTE following the resignation of DUP First Minister Paul Givan, which automatically removed Sinn Fein deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill from her position.
“The Assembly has not been suspended. The Assembly continues to operate fully as a legislature. Legislation will be considered in the Assembly right up to the date when the assembly is dissolved for the election. I think that we have been very patient,” he said.
He said that the protocol is causing “societal damage” to Northern Ireland.
Sir Jeffrey added: “We waited months and months and months, and no progress has been made in the talks between the UK and the EU.
“Last week I met the Prime Minister in London. I asked the Prime Minister what his assessment was of the likelihood of agreement being reached with the EU by the deadline set by the EU, which is mid-February. The Prime Minister told me – I appreciate his candour – that he estimated probably between 20% and 30% chance of an agreement.”
Matt Mathers4 February 2022 10:40
NI justice minister: DUP move ‘fairly cynical’
Northern Ireland justice minister and Alliance Party leader Naomi Long claimed Paul Givan’s resignation was “a fairly cynical electoral manoeuvre from the DUP”.
She added: “It stops us being able to make progress for people in Northern Ireland and there comes a point where if we are going to be serious about politics we need to be able to work through our difficulties.
“I am not denying there is a problem, I have never denied there is an issue with the protocol.
“I think it is as a direct consequence of Brexit that we are in this mess, which the DUP campaigned for and supported.
“We need to be really clear about how we ended up where we are.
“I am not denying there is a problem, but that problem won’t be solved by the Northern Ireland Executive not being able to meet.”
Matt Mathers4 February 2022 10:23
Boris Johnson is a ‘stain on our politics’, says Ed Miliband
Boris Johnson has become a “stain on our politics”, Ed Miliband has said.
Labour’s shadow climate change secretary spoke to the BBC earlier amid a mass walkout of staff from No 10 Downing Street.
“It feels really like the captain of the ship is throwing the crew overboard to save himself,” he said.
Boris Johnson has become a ‘stain on our politics’, says Ed Miliband
Matt Mathers4 February 2022 09:57
Full report: Boris Johnson suffers another resignation from No 10 team
Our politics correspondent Ashley Cowburn has more details on the resignation of No 10 aide Elena Narozanski:
Matt Mathers4 February 2022 09:47
Fifth aide leaves No 10 as exodus continues
Another aide to Boris Johnson has quit her job as the exodus from No 10 Downing Street continues.
Policy unit member Elena Narozanski is the fifth government official to walk out in the space of 24 hours, Conservative Home reports.
Dan Rosenfield, the prime minister’s chief of staff, and Martin Reynolds, his principal private secretary, have already left.
Two other key advisers to Mr Johnson – press chief Jack Doyle and policy chief Munira Mirza – have also called quit.
Matt Mathers4 February 2022 08:57
Tories win Southend West by-election in poll prompted by Sir David Amess killing
The Conservatives have held on to the seat of Southend West following a by-election triggered by the killing of Sir David Amess.
In a contest that Labour and the Liberal Democrats along with other mainstream political parties, chose not to contest, Tory candidate Anna Firth ran out as a comfortable winner with 86% of the vote.
Read the full story here:
Holly Bancroft4 February 2022 08:29
Minister attempts to claim resignation of four advisers shows Boris Johnson is ‘taking charge’
Government minister Greg Hands has attempted to claim the resignations of key advisers in Boris Johnson’s inner circle demonstrates the prime minister is “taking charge”.
The remarks — echoed by some Tory MPs loyal to the prime minister on social media — follow an evening of turmoil at the top of government, with the departure of No 10’s director and of communications, and head of policy.
Read the full story from Ashley Cowburn here:
Holly Bancroft4 February 2022 08:22
Tory MP: PM needs to ‘ship up or shape out’
Tory MP Huw Merriman has said that Boris Johnson needed to improve or leave Downing Street for good.
In a slightly mixed up warning to the PM, Mr Merriman said: “We all know that if the prime minister doesn’t ship up, then they have to shape out [sic], and that’s exactly what happened when this prime minister took over.”
He added that he was “deeply troubled by what’s going on.”
Holly Bancroft4 February 2022 08:18
Downing street resignations are PM ‘taking charge’, claims minister
Four senior aides resigning at 10 Downing Street are the result of the prime minister “taking charge”, energy minister Greg Hands has claimed.
Speaking on Sky news, Mr Hands said Boris Johnson was making changes to his top team in the way of Sue Gray’s report on Partygate.
“Resignations have been made, resignations have been accepted,” Greg Hands said.
“The Prime Minister was absolutely clear on Monday that there would be changes at the top of No 10 and that is what he has delivered.
“The Sue Gray report update said that there were failing at the top of the operation. This is the Prime Minister taking charge.
“This is a wider issue than just the Sue Gray report. This is about saying we need changes at No 10, which is what the Prime Minister said on Monday.”
Holly Bancroft4 February 2022 07:45
Tory whips are braced for ministerial resignations, Telegraph reports
Tory whips are preparing for ministerial resignations, The Daily Telegraph has reported.
The paper reports that Alex Chalk, the Solicitor General, could be someone who could quit soon because of unhappiness over how Partygate was handled.
It comes as four senior aides left Downing Street yesterday, with one blasting Boris Johnson’s “inappropriate and partisan” attack on Keir Starmer.
Holly Bancroft4 February 2022 07:36