Johnson to face lawmakers at PMQs
British Prime Minister Boris
Johnson must change the culture of Downing Street after a series
of revelations that staff partied while ordinary people were
grappling with COVID-19 lockdowns, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss
said on Wednesday.
Johnson, who in 2019 won the biggest Conservative majority
in more than 30 years, is braced for the publication of an
official investigation into claims that there were multiple
boozy Downing Street parties during lockdowns.
It was not immediately clear when the results of that
investigation by Cabinet Office official Sue Gray would be
published, especially as police have opened their own
Truss, tipped as a possible future prime minister if Johnson
is toppled, said Downing Street had not yet been given the
findings of the Gray report but that it would come out very
Asked about the claims that Johnson and his staff had
partied at the heart of the British state while ordinary people
were banned from even bidding farewell to their dying relatives
in person, Truss said some of the reports were concerning.
"There clearly needs to be a change in culture," Truss told
the BBC. "We need to get the results of the report, we need to
look at the results and fix the issues there are."
Asked if she had leadership ambitions, Truss said Johnson,
57, had done a great job as prime minister by delivering Brexit
and responding to the COVID pandemic. Truss said she was 100%
supportive of Johnson.
Johnson has given a variety of explanations about the
parties: first he said no rules had been broken but then he
apologised to the British people for the apparent hypocrisy of
He has denied an allegation he was warned that a "bring your
own booze" lockdown gathering on May 20, 2020, which he says he
thought was a work event, was inappropriate.
ITV reported on Monday that Johnson and his now wife Carrie
had attended a surprise party of up to 30 people for his
birthday in the Cabinet Room at Downing Street in June 2020,
when indoor gatherings were banned.
To trigger a leadership challenge, 54 of the 359
Conservative MPs in parliament must write letters of no
confidence to the chairman of the party's 1922 Committee.