Lift lockdown or lose your job! Boris warned he’s facing leadership coup – MPs turn on PM
UK lockdown: Desmond Swayne claims 'liberty comes first'
Mr Johnson has been told he must come clean about how long he thinks the Covid restrictions will last and how he will go about lifting them. The Prime Minister was warned he would face a leadership challenge if he did not end the lockdown soon.
Steve Baker, the deputy chair of the Tory backbench Covid Recovery Group, has written to MPs calling on them to make their views known to the Government chief whip.
He told them “inevitably the Prime Minister’s leadership will be on the table” unless Mr Johnson outlined the return to freedom.
Earlier this month two MP were understood to have submitted letters of no confidence in the Conservative Party leader after he announced a third national lockdown for England.
Both backbenchers were elected for the first time in the 2019 general election sent in their letters after becoming “fed up” at the handling of the pandemic.
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The message sent by Mr Baker to Tory MPs today reads: “I am sorry to have to say this again and as bluntly as this: it is imperative you equip the Chief Whip today with your opinion that debate will become about the PM’s leadership if the Government does not set out a clear plan for when our full freedoms will be restored, with a guarantee that this strategy will not be used again next winter.”
Seen by The Sun, the note continued: “People are telling me they are losing faith in our Conservative Party leadership because they are not standing up for our values as a party.
“If we continue forward with a strategy that hammers freedom, hammers the private sector, hammers small business owners and hammers the poor, inevitably the Prime Minister’s leadership will be on the table: we strongly do not want that after all we have been through as a country.”
The Prime Minister has insisted he does not want to keep restrictions in place any longer than necessary.
When he announced the latest restrictions on January 4, he said the surge in coronavirus cases left him with “no choice” but to act.
Acknowledging the public was suffering from lockdown fatigue, he said he believed the UK was “entering the last phase of the struggle”.
He added: “I want to say to everyone right across the United Kingdom that I know how tough this is, I know how frustrated you are, I know that you have had more than enough of government guidance about defeating this virus.
“But now more than ever, we must pull together.”
More to follow…
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