Lib Dems in bid to force publication of Sue Gray No 10 full party report | Boris Johnson
A fresh bid will be launched next week to force the publication of the full report into whether No 10 parties broke Covid laws, with Tory MPs urged to back the decision to ensure it doesn’t there are “more cover-ups and more lies”.
While further questionnaires were sent by Scotland Yard to those who attended a dozen gatherings under investigation, a ‘humble address’ motion was tabled in the House of Commons by the Liberal Democrats.
If passed, ministers would be forced to release a specific set of documents within two days of the end of the Met’s investigation. A date has not yet been set for the vote, but could come on the next opposition day allotted to the Lib Dems.
It also emerged on Wednesday that former Tory big donor John Armitage is now funding some staff costs for Labor frontbencher Wes Streeting, in an escalation of his opposition to Boris Johnson.
Armitage, who revealed last week that he had lost faith in Johnson after giving £3million to the Tories, donated £15,000 to the running of Streeting’s office. He previously donated £12,500 to Labor in March last year and £60,000 to former MP Frank Field in 2016 and 2017. He also donated £65,000 to the Retention campaign .
The documents requested include an unredacted version of Sue Gray’s report, all accompanying evidence collected by the Cabinet Office and a list of Downing Street staff with a fixed sanction notice.
The move will rekindle pressure on the government over the Partygate scandal, which has prompted calls from some Tory MPs for Boris Johnson to quit.
Although the Prime Minister attended some of the events under surveillance, including a ‘bring your own booze’ garden party hosted by one of his most senior former civil service advisers, he continued to deny any wrongdoing. reprehensible and avoided a vote of no confidence. .
Some details are feared to never be known, after a memo from Whitehall leaked to those investigated by Gray said the Met ‘will not release details of their investigation and therefore your line manager will not be informed’ .
The Lib Dem’s humble motion of address was tabled and supported by the party’s 13 MPs. Ed Davey, the party leader, said Johnson “cannot be trusted to admit if he or other Tory ministers end up being fined by the police”, and “we have seen time and time again that his instinct is to lie, blame others or conceal the truth”.
He added: “MPs from all parties need to come together and force Boris Johnson to come clean. The public deserves to know if our Prime Minister broke the law and for Sue Gray’s full report, including photos, to be released.
“If Johnson is found to have broken the law, he must confess and resign. No more cover-ups, no more lies.
Labour’s next opposition day will be on February 23, which means that if the Met’s inquiry is complete at this point, Keir Starmer could table his own address motion to force the publication of documents related to the Gray investigation.
Angela Rayner, Deputy Leader of the Labor Party, has meanwhile written to Cabinet Secretary Steve Barclay and Cabinet Secretary Simon Case, demanding assurances that Johnson and his staff have not received any taxpayer-funded legal advice.
Downing Street also admitted this week that no minutes were taken at the garden party Johnson attended on May 20, 2020 and that he believed to have been a “work event”.
A freedom of information request asking for a record of the discussions yielded no response, with No 10 pointing to government rules that say minutes are not required to be kept for certain events , including those that are “purely informal or social in nature”.
Johnson declined to say whether he would resign if fined by police for breaking Covid laws, but his spokesman suggested Downing Street will reveal if the Prime Minister receives a fixed penalty notice.
This article was last modified on February 17, 2022. Due to an editing error, an early version referred to Frank Field as the “late” former MP. We apologize.