Sadiq Khan has today turned down a call by Boris Johnson to erect a Ronald Reagan statue just outside of the Houses of Parliament.
Tory MP Andrew Rosindell today told MPs that a statue of the former US president had been removed from a square in Mayfair and called on Johnson to place it in Parliament Square alongside monuments to people such as Winston Churchill, Nelson Mandela and David Lloyd George.
Johnson said he agreed with Rosindell’s sentiment, but that it was Khan’s call as mayor of London whether to erect the statue.
“I think he’s entirely right in what he says about President Reagan, he was a very distinguished president, it’s not up to me to install a statue for him, that’s for the Greater London Authority, I think it has to be an appeal to the current mayor of London,” Johnson said.
“Let’s hope there’s a new one to do justice to the memory of Ronald Reagan.”
However, the suggestion was quickly nixed by London’s Labour mayor.
A spokesperson for Khan said: “There are no plans for a statue of Ronald Reagan in Parliament Square.”
The statue of Reagan was recently removed from its place in Grosvenor Square, Mayfair, on the site of the former US embassy.
The Sunday Express reported recently that it was removed by the site’s current owner – real estate developer Qatari Diar.
The statue, which was erected in 2011, is now in storage.
Speaking during Prime Minister’s Questions, Rosindell said: “I know the Prime Minister would agree with me that President Reagan was a true friend to the UK who alongside Margaret Thatcher ended the Cold War and supported Britain during the liberation of the Falkland Islands.
“Now that our American friends have moved to a new embassy in Wandsworth, would the Prime Minister agree with me that President Reagan’s statue should be moved to a more prominent location?”
Reagan was US president between 1980 and 1988, and is still a much loved figure in the Republican Party.
He is best remembered for deregulatory and low tax policy agenda, along with his staunch opposition to the USSR.