UK opposition leader calls on Johnson to resign

British opposition leader Keir Starmer has denied Prime Minister Boris Johnson the ability to govern in the face of the escalating “Partygate” affair. It is now in the “national interest” for Johnson to resign, the leader of the opposition Labor Party said at a conference in London on Saturday. He called on the prime minister’s conservative Tory party to do what was necessary and get rid of Johnson.

“What we have now is a situation where you have a prime minister who has lost the moral authority to lead,” Starmer said. This authority is needed right now in the pandemic. Britain faces other major challenges – and Johnson is “absent” and in hiding, according to the Labor leader.

Keir Starmer followed up just three days after his criticism on Wednesday.

– © AFP / Jessica Taylor / UK Parliament

Garden Partygate

Johnson has been under immense pressure for a long time, especially because of celebrations in Downing Street during lockdown times. He apologized in Parliament for a garden party at his official residence on Wednesday. But further revelations followed, including celebrations at the seat of government on the eve of the funeral of Queen consort Prince Philip in April 2021. At that time, strict corona rules applied in Great Britain, which left Queen Elizabeth II alone in a bench in the chapel of her Windsor residence had to when her husband was buried.

According to a media report on Saturday, there were not just isolated, but regular gatherings in Downing Street during the pandemic where alcohol was drunk. That writes the “Mirror”, which is usually well informed in the matter. Johnson’s employees met every Friday for “Wine-time Fridays” and the prime minister encouraged them to “let off steam” – even though indoor meetings were strictly prohibited under the lockdown rules. The head of government had visited these meetings several times himself. The employees bought an office refrigerator especially for the regular meetings to keep their bottles of white wine, Prosecco and beer cool.

Friday meetings have long been a “Downing Street tradition,” including under previous British governments, according to The Mirror. However, the meetings continued even after corona restrictions were imposed. (apa, dpa)

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