By Press Association
The British Prime Minister is underneath renewed strain to sack his closest aide after eyewitness stories known as into query each Dominic Cummings’ and Downing Street’s account of his lockdown whereabouts.
Boris Johnson had supplied his “full assist” to his under-fire chief adviser after it emerged Mr Cummings had travelled 260 miles to Country Durham regardless of strict restrictions on the time to not journey lengthy distances.
Mr Cummings, in an announcement issued by means of Number 10, stated he travelled to be near household to hunt assist taking care of his four-year-old little one after his spouse grew to become sick with coronavirus signs.
But contemporary claims, in line with stories within the Observer and Sunday Mirror, counsel the 48-year-old made a second journey to Durham, having been noticed within the area on April 19 – 5 days after returning to work in Westminster and whereas strict guidelines have been nonetheless in place to not journey.
A second eyewitness advised the 2 papers additionally they noticed him every week earlier in Barnard Castle on Easter Sunday, a preferred vacationer location 30 miles away from Durham.
The information comes after a bunch of senior Cabinet ministers – together with British Health Secretary Matt Hancock and UK Attorney General Suella Braverman – took to social media to indicate assist for Mr Cummings.
British Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, talking on the day by day Downing Street briefing, stated Mr Cummings had “stayed put for 14 days” whereas residing at a household property, having preempted his personal sickness as soon as his spouse confirmed Covid-19 signs.
It is evident that @BorisJohnson should sack Dominic Cummings. When the PMs high advisor ignores the Governments instruction to the general public to not have interaction in non important journey he has to depart workplace. Immediately. https://t.co/4u5ptD7S9c
— Ian Blackford (@Ianblackford_MP) May 23, 2020
But the journey to Barnard Castle, if appropriate, would name that testimony into query.
Ian Blackford, chief in Westminster of the SNP, renewed his requires Boris Johnson to axe Mr Cummings from his group following the brand new stories.
He wrote on Twitter: “It is evident that Boris Johnson should sack Dominic Cummings.
“When the PMs high advisor ignores the Government’s instruction to the general public to not have interaction in non-essential journey he has to depart workplace. Immediately.”
A Labour supply questioned why senior ministers had defended Mr Cummings in gentle of the contemporary allegations.
UK Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden tweeted shortly after the day by day press convention had completed, saying: “Dom Cummings adopted the rules and taken care of his household. End of story.”
Labour has, together with the SNP and the Liberal Democrats, written to Cabinet Secretary Mark Sedwill demanding an inquiry into what occurred.
The Labour supply stated: “If these newest revelations are true, why on earth have been Cabinet ministers despatched out this afternoon to defend Dominic Cummings?
Dom Cummings adopted the rules and taken care of his household. End of story.
— Oliver Dowden (@OliverDowden) May 23, 2020
“We want an pressing investigation by the Cabinet Secretary to unravel this matter.
“It can’t be proper that there’s one rule for the Prime Minister’s adviser and one other for the British folks.”
Acting Lib Dem chief Ed Davey stated Mr Johnson’s judgment could be known as into query if he didn’t give Mr Cummings the chop.
“If Dominic Cummings is now allowed to stay in place a second longer, it can more and more be the Prime Minister’s judgment that’s within the highlight,” stated the previous vitality secretary.
“Surely Boris Johnson should now recognise the actions of his high adviser are an insult to the thousands and thousands who’ve made large private sacrifices to cease the unfold of coronavirus.”
Downing Street refused to touch upon the alleged developments.
In an announcement issued earlier on Saturday, No 10 stated Mr Cummings had acted “in step with coronavirus pointers” when driving as much as search little one assist from household after social distancing measures had been put in place.