'Downing Street partied while people were dying' - MP slams Boris Johnson as Met Police confirms fines following No. 10 lockdown probe

A North East MP has repeated calls for Boris Johnson to quit, after Scotland Yard announced it would be fining 20 people over allegations of lockdown-busting parties at the heart of government.

By James Harrison
Tuesday, 29th March 2022, 3:55 pm

The probe into the gatherings started earlier this year and is expected to continue, raising the prospect of even more people being told to pay for breaking lockdown coronavirus rules in place at the time.

Labour’s Grahame Morris, who has represented the Easington constituency since 2010, has said the latest revelations into the long-running ‘partygate’ affair showed once again it was time for Johnson to leave office or be removed from it.

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"Downing Street partied while people were dying,” said Morris, after news of the first round of fines was confirmed.

"The Prime Minister should not be in post.

“The Conservative Party should have removed the Prime Minister, the failure of Tory MPs left the UK with a weak and discredited Prime Minister at a time of international crisis.

Grahame Morris MP.

”The international community distrusts and tolerates Boris Johnson.

"The Tories will make excuses for the Prime Minister, but he needs to go because he damages the UK's reputation at home and abroad."

No 10 has insisted Boris Johnson did not mislead MPs when he told them no lockdown rules had been broken in Downing Street, despite the Metropolitan Police concluding the law was breached.

The Prime Minister is not believed to be among those in line for a fine at this point – despite it being understood he was present at six of the at least 12 events being probed – as he is contesting the allegations and took advice from his personal lawyer on how to respond.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Jill Mortimer in Hartlepool after she won last May's town by-election.

As well as the police investigation, senior civil servant Sue Gray is waiting to release the full findings of her own report into events in Downing Street during coronavirus lockdowns, although an update on the probe published earlier this year noted “failures of leadership” and “excessive consumption of alcohol” at No. 10.

Conservative MP for Hartlepool Jill Mortimer has been contacted for comment.

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