Foreign Office minister Lord Goldsmith has announced his resignation over what he described as Government “apathy” towards the environment.
In a scathing letter to the Prime Minister on Friday, the Tory peer accused Rishi Sunak directly of being “simply uninterested” in climate issues.
The departure comes just a day after the peer was censured in a report by the Privileges Committee which named Boris Johnson allies said to have put “improper pressure” on its investigation into his Partygate lies to Parliament.
“The problem is not that the Government is hostile to the environment, it is that you, our Prime Minister, are simply uninterested. That signal, or lack of it, has trickled down through Whitehall and caused a kind of paralysis.”
He added: “This Government’s apathy in the face of the greatest challenge we have faced makes continuing in my current role untenable. “
Yesterday it was reported that Boris Johnson allies Nadine Dorries and Jacob Rees-Mogg were among MPs who attempted to undermine the privileges committee’s investigation into the ex-prime minister.
Eight current and former MPs – Dorries, Rees-Mogg, Lord Zac Goldsmith, Mark Jenkinson, Michael Fabricant, Brendan Clarke-Smith, Andrea Jenkyns, and Priti Patel – were involved in a “campaign waged outside Parliament… to undermine the committee”.
The committee ruled earlier this month Johnson has lied to Parliament with his assurances over partygate, which saw No10 staff drinking and dancing during Covid-19 lockdowns.
Now a follow-up report has found members of the committee were attacked in a bid to prevent them completing their work across newspapers, radio, TV and social media.
Press Association – Nina Lloyd