Wednesday, 24 July 2019

Top ministers sacked, resign as Boris Johnson takes over as British Prime Minister

Boris Johnson has taken over from Theresa May as the new British Prime Minister.

Johnson was appointed PM following May’s resignation earlier on Tuesday.

He formally took office after meeting Queen Elizabeth at the Buckingham Palace.

In a statement Buckingham Palace said: “The Queen received in Audience The Right Honourable Boris Johnson MP this afternoon and requested him to form a new Administration. Mr Johnson accepted Her Majesty's offer and kissed hands upon his appointment as Prime Minister and First Lord of the Treasury.”

Following his meeting with the Queen, Johnson delivered a rousing speech outside No 10 Downing Street.
Prime Minister-Boris-Johnson-speaking
The new PM promised to deliver Brexit by 31 October "no ifs, no buts", adding "the buck stops here".

"The doubters, the doomsters, the gloomsters" who said it could not be done were "wrong", the new PM added.

He said he had "every confidence" the UK would leave the EU in 99 days time with a deal, but preparations for the "remote possibility" of a no-deal Brexit would be accelerated.

Johnson also pledged to improve infrastructure, recruit 20,000 new police officers and "level up" school spending.

Setting out his priorities for office, the former London mayor hit out at the "pessimists" who did not believe Brexit could be delivered and called for an end to three years of indecision.

"The people who bet against Britain are going to lose their shirts because we are going to restore trust in our democracy," he said.

"The time has come to act, to take decisions and change this country for the better."

Johnson also vowed to bring all four nations of the United Kingdom - or what he described as the "awesome foursome" - together in the task of strengthening a post-Brexit country.

"Though I am today building a great team of men and women, I will take personal responsibility for the change I want to see," he concluded.

"Never mind the backstop, the buck stops here."

The new Prime Minister is also making sweeping changes to his top team. More than half the cabinet, including leadership rival Jeremy Hunt, have quit or been sacked.

Announcing his departure, the foreign secretary said he had been offered an alternative role but had turned it down.

Defence Secretary Penny Mordaunt, a leading Brexiteer who is popular across the party, was one of the more surprising of the 16 departures so far.

Another prominent Brexiteer, International Trade Secretary Liam Fox, was also ousted, along with Business Secretary Greg Clark - a vocal opponent of a no-deal Brexit.

Education Secretary Damian Hinds, Northern Ireland Secretary Karen Bradley, Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes, Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright and Communities Secretary James Brokenshire have also gone, along with Chris Grayling, whose record as Transport Secretary was much criticised.

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