British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Tuesday named new UK Health Secretary and Finance Minister shortly after Health Secretary Sajid Javid and Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak tendered their resignation, media reports said.
UK Cabinet chief of staff Steve Barclay has been appointed as the new health secretary. Meanwhile, UK education secretary Nadhim Zahawi was named as the new finance minister.
In his resignation letter, Sunak said he was “sad to be leaving the government”, but has come to the conclusion that he “cannot continue like this”.
“The public rightly expect the 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,” Rishi Sunak said.
Javid said he had lost confidence in Boris Johnson’s ability to govern following multiple scandals, saying he could “no longer continue in good conscience”. The minister said that many lawmakers and the public had lost confidence in Johnson’s ability to govern in the national interest.
In his resignation letter, which he posted to Twitter, Javid told Johnson that “the values you represent reflect on your colleagues,” and in light of recent scandals, the public had concluded that their party was neither “competent” nor “acting in the national interest.”
The exit of the top minister comes amid the row involving the former Conservative party whip Chris Pincher, who was accused of sexual misconduct.
Last week, Pincher quit as deputy chief whip after claims that he groped two men but Johnson knew about allegations against him as far back as 2019. Boris acknowledged he should have sacked Pincher when he was found to have behaved inappropriately when he was a Foreign Office minister in 2019.
The British PM said he regrets giving Pincher a government role as Deputy Chief Whip following the revelation of a misconduct complaint against him.
“In hindsight it was the wrong thing to do and I apologise to everyone who has been badly affected by it. I just want to make absolutely clear that there’s no place in this government for anybody who is predatory or abuses their position of power,” he said.
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