The British Brexit negotiator David Frost stepped down from government on Saturday, crowning a busy week for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, after a party rebellion on the new brakes on the coronavirus and a humiliation in the by-elections.
Frost, a trusted ally of the prime minister, sent his resignation letter following press reports indicating that he would step down in January 2022 for discrepancies with travel restriction plans and tax increases. “It is disappointing that this plan was made public tonight and in this circumstance I believe that the right thing for me is for me to write to resign with immediate effect,” he said in the letter published by Johnson’s office.
Frost added in the text that “Brexit is already safe” and evokes his concerns regarding the “direction” that the current government is taking regarding regulations for the coronavirus.
Johnson responded that he regretted the resignation very much “given all that you have achieved and contributed with this administration.”
A source from the diary The Mail on Sunday, who remained anonymous, said that Frost opposed new government restrictions in its fight against the coronavirus, as well as the “net zero” emissions climate goal and tax increases.
Angela Rayner, deputy leader of the opposition Labor party, wrote on Twitter that this resignation shows “a government in total chaos just as the country faces uncertain weeks.” He added: “Boris Johnson is not up to the job. We deserve better than this clowning. “
Johnson’s situation is very precarious after the rebellion of a hundred parliamentarians from his party this week in the vote on restrictions against the pandemic, and the loss of a seat in a local election.
Furthermore, weeks before a scandal when it became known that a party was being held in Downing Street at Christmas 2020, despite the restrictions in place at the time.
The loss of the by-election opened up speculation among conservatives about Johnson’s leadership of the party, and Frost could run for that job.
David Frost, 56, was known as Johnson’s “Sherpa” in the Brexit deal after he was elected prime minister in 2019, and he worked to close the divorce treaty with the European Union.
Frost appeared as the second most popular government minister in a poll by ConservativeHome, an influential blog among conservatives.
Conservative lawmaker Andrew Bridgen cautioned that Johnson “is running out of time and friends are running out to fulfill the promises and discipline of a true conservative government.”
Similarly, Arlene Foster, who resigned as Prime Minister of Northern Ireland due to the Brexit trade agreements in that province of the United Kingdom, warned that Frost’s resignation has enormous consequences.
“Lord Frost’s resignation from the cabinet is an important moment for the government, but huge for those of us who thought it would take care of” Northern Ireland, Foster wrote on Twitter.
(With information from AFP)
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