Waveney MP Peter Aldous has become the latest Tory backbencher to publicly call for Boris Johnson to resign, today sending in a letter of no-confidence in the Prime Minister’s leadership of the party.
Aldous tweeted that after a “great deal of soul-searching” that Johnson should go over the Downing Street parties scandal.
The MP said “I believe that this is in the best interests of the country, the government and the Conservative party”.
Ten Tory MPs have now publicly called for Johnson to resign, with more thought to have sent in letters of no-confidence to the 1922 Committee of Tory backbenchers.
A vote of no-confidence in Johnson’s leadership of the Tory party will be held if 54 letters are handed to 1922 Committee chair Graham Brady.
It comes after Sue Gray released her long-awaited report into the parties scandal, with the senior civil servant unable to publish the vast majority of her findings on the allegations of widespread Covid rule breaking in Downing Street due to the ongoing police investigation.
She said a “number of gatherings” in Downing Street during strict Covid restrictions “should not have been allowed to take place”, while hitting out at the “lack of leadership” in Number 10 and the Cabinet Office.
Boris Johnson told the House of Commons he was “sorry, and I’m sorry for the things we simply didn’t get right and also sorry for the way this matter has been handled”.
He added: “But it isn’t enough to say sorry. This is a moment when we must look at ourselves in the mirror and we must learn. And while the Metropolitan Police must yet complete their investigation, I of course accept Sue Gray’s general findings in full.”
He has come under fire from some Tory MPs since the release of the report, including from ex-PM Theresa May and former cabinet minister Andrew Mitchell.
Mitchell said the Prime Minister “no longer enjoys my support”, while May launched a scathing attack on Johnson’s integrity.
She said: “Either [Johnson and his team] had not read the rules, or didn’t understand what they meant … or they didn’t think the rules applied to them. Which was it?”