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Former PM Theresa May blasts Johnson over partygate scandal

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his predecessor Theresa May in the House of Commons, London, the UK (file Photo)

Former British Prime Minister Theresa May has expressed “anger” at PM Boris Johnson and his Downing Street parties after weeks of silence, requesting “full accountability” from the PM for holding social gatherings amid COVID-19 lockdowns, local media report.

In a letter published by local newspaper The Maidenhead Advertiser on Friday, May wrote that, “I have said previously that it is vital that those who set the rules, follow the rules. Nobody is above the law.”

“Like so many, I was angry to hear stories of those in Number 10, who are responsible for setting the Coronavirus rules, not properly following the rules,” she said.

As a critic of Johnson’s policies in the Commons, this was May’s first intervention over the partygate scandal.

The former PM said that, “If there is evidence of deliberate or premeditated wrongdoing, I expect full accountability to follow.”

Johnson’s resignation as foreign minister from May’s cabinet was seen as one of the blows to her authority that led to her own resignation in 2019.

May’ comments came after many politicians in the UK, including main opposition leader Keir Starmer, called on Johnson to resign after the revelations of a series of parties in 10 Downing street.

In a Twitter post on Tuesday, Starmer blasted the premier as a “national distraction,” saying millions of people were “struggling to pay the bills” while Johnson and his government were “spending the whole time mopping up their own rule-breaking, sleaze and deceit.”

“He’s got to go,” the Labour Party leader said, calling for Johnson’s immediate resignation.

However, Johnson has given a flurry of excuses and explanations about the parties at different points. He has rejected the claim that rules were broken but has apologized to the British people.

Sue Gray, a senior British civil servant who is currently second permanent secretary in the cabinet office, is leading an investigation into the PM’s parties and is expected to report her findings in the coming weeks.

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