Boris Johnson should resign if it emerges he lied to parliament about lockdown parties at Downing Street, the leader of York’s Conservative group said.
Paul Doughty called for the urgent publication of the report by Sue Gray, the senior civil servant tasked with carrying out an investigation into alleged Covid rule breaking in Number 10 and government departments.
The Prime Minister’s former aide Dominic Cummings has accused the prime minister of lying when No 10 denied Johnson had been warned against allowing a “bring your own booze” garden party.
Mr Johnson has insisted “nobody told me that what we were doing was against the rules” and he believed he was attending a work event in May 2020.
Coun Doughty said: “It’s clear to us all that something has gone seriously wrong with the behaviour of many people who work in Downing Street.
“This reflects badly on the Government at a time when we should all be focussed on staying safe, following the rules, protecting each other and getting through this incredibly difficult time.
“If the Prime Minister has lied to parliament then of course he should resign. Similarly, if he can no longer command the support of his MPs, he will need to make way for somebody who can.”
Coun Doughty pointed to the UK’s vaccination programme and relative economic success in recent months as evidence the government was making “mostly the right calls”.
But he added: “Uncertainty caused by the relentless media barrage is causing further damage so we need the investigation from Sue Gray, the independent civil servant, to conclude rapidly and a clear line drawn under this so that we can get on with dealing with the issues that are important to us all, even if that means moving forward under a different Prime Minister.”
The report is expected to be published early next week.
Boris Johnson will fight any no confidence vote launched against him by his own MPs and expects to fight the next general election, No 10 said yesterday.