Boris Johnson refuses to quit despite mass resignations

Boris Johnson

London: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has vowed to “keep going” despite an increasing number of Conservative ministers and other officials quitting in disapproval of the way he handled the issue of a senior official accused of sexual misconduct.

According to media reports, a delegation of Cabinet ministers planned to meet with Johnson in his Downing Street office on Wednesday evening to pressure him to resign. Some of those anticipated to call for his resignation include Transport Secretary Grant Shapps and steadfast supporter Brandon Lewis.

Read: Johnson’s government plunged into crisis as key ministers quit

“The job of a prime minister in difficult circumstances when you’ve been handed a colossal mandate is to keep going. And that’s what I’m going to do,” Johnson said earlier at the weekly session of Prime Minister’s Questions in parliament.

David Davis, a Conservative legislator who had previously called on the 58-year-old leader to resign, told parliament that he was again asking Johnson “to do the honourable thing, to put the interests of the nation before his interest, and before … it does become impossible for the government to do its job.”

Johnson said he did not believe that it was against the national interest for him to remain as prime minister.

“I thank him very much for the point he has made again. I just could not disagree with him more,” Johnson said.

Later on, Wednesday, James Duddridge, a Conservative lawmaker and close aide of Johnson, told Sky News the British leader “is buoyant, he is up for a fight” after a meeting with members of his top cabinet team.

Duddridge said Johnson and the newly-appointed finance minister Nadhim Zahawi would set out a new joint plan for the economy next week which would include tax cuts.

Johnson sacked Michael Gove, a senior minister who media earlier said had told the British leader he should quit.

On Wednesday night, Secretary of State for Wales Simon Hart joined those resigning.

The attorney general for England and Wales, Suella Braverman, also called on PM Boris Johnson to resign and became the first cabinet minister to say they would run to replace him in any Conservative Party leadership contest.

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