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Boris Johnson Makes Statement In Response To Sue Gray Report

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Boris Johnson Makes Statement In Response To Sue Gray Report

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has released a statement after Sue Gray published her report into Downing Street's lockdown gatherings.

Initial findings of the report by senior civil servant Gray were released today, January 31, following a multitude of allegations about illegal gatherings that took place during the height of lockdown in 2020.

The allegations prompted calls for Johnson to resign, though the PM argued that it would be 'better until the full conclusion of the inquiry’ was reached before any steps were taken.

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Boris Johnson is facing a police investigation over Downing Street parties (Alamy)
Boris Johnson is facing a police investigation over Downing Street parties (Alamy)

Now, Gray has concluded there were 'failures of leadership' during the pandemic, arguing that 'some of the behaviour surrounding these gatherings is difficult to justify'.

The report was not published in full as the most serious allegations are being investigated by the police, BBC News reports, though initial findings argue that 'at times it seems there was too little thought given to what was happening across the country in considering the appropriateness of some of these gatherings, the risks they presented to public health and how they might appear to the public'.

Johnson has now spoken out about the report and apologised for the things he did not get right, saying he understands that members of the public feel angry at the situation.

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Downing Street sign (Alamy)
Downing Street sign (Alamy)

He commented: 'But it isn't enough to say sorry. This is a moment when we must look at ourselves in the mirror and we must learn. While the Metropolitan Police must yet complete their investigation, and that means there are no details of specific events in Sue Gray's report, I of course accept Sue Gray's general findings in full, and above all her recommendation that we must learn from these events and act now.'

Johnson also said no conclusions should be drawn from the fact the police are investigating some of the allegations made against Downing Street, but laid out plans to review the codes of conduct of civil servants and advisers.

He commented: 'I get it, and I will fix it.'

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Boris Johnson and cabinet ministers (Alamy)
Boris Johnson and cabinet ministers (Alamy)

Amid calls for him to resign from Opposition MPs, Johnson said he knows 'what the issue is' for the public, saying: 'It is whether this government can be trusted to deliver and I say Mr Speaker yes we can be trusted to deliver.'

Following Johnson's comments, Labour leader Kier Starmer expressed belief there 'can be no doubt that the prime minister is now subject to criminal investigation'.

A spokesperson for Johnson previously said the government would 'consider what will be appropriate' in terms of publishing a further version of the report after the police probe.

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Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: News, Boris Johnson, Coronavirus, Politics, UK News

Emily Brown
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