British Prime Minister Boris Johnson began shaking up his cabinet on Wednesday, moving some of his colleagues under fire, such as Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, who was demoted to Justice Minister after being criticized for his handling of the fall of Kabul.
After months of criticizing several of his top teams for mistakes and errors, Johnson finally began a process that some say he wanted to do many weeks in advance, to make the changes he feels he needs to move forward with his “leveling up” agenda for boost the North and Midlands economies.
Johnson has made fighting regional inequality a priority for his administration, but the Covid-19 pandemic overshadowed action on some key promises he made in 2019, when he won the Conservative Party’s largest parliamentary majority since the leading figure in politics. modern British, Margaret Thatcher.
Gavin Williamson was the first to be fired, as education secretary, after a widespread perception of incompetence in his handling of schools during the pandemic. Attorney General Robert Buckland was next, followed by Robert Jenrick, the Housing Secretary.
Jenrick had been criticized for his role in a development proposed by a Conservative Party donor.
Michael Gove, a great intellectual influence in the direction of government policy and the only current cabinet minister who was at the head table when the Conservatives came to power with David Cameron in 2010, will replace Jenrick. Gove was previously a Minister in the Cabinet Office.
“We know that the public also wants us to deliver on their priorities, and that is why the prime minister wants to make sure we have the right equipment for that,” Johnson’s spokesman told reporters.
A source in Johnson’s office said he would appoint ministers “with a focus on uniting and leveling the whole country.”
Rumors of a shake-up had been circulating for weeks.
Some in his party had suggested that the threat of a shakeup helped ensure that Johnson’s plans for a tax hike to address a crisis in health and social care garnered the party’s backing after it was criticized in some quarters for reinforcing intergenerational inequality, which spared many retirees but hit most workers. old voters.
Other Conservative MPs said the shakeup was long delayed, with one describing the cabinet as a ship that is “hideously encrusted with barnacles.”
(FRANCE 24 with REUTERS)