In parting blow, Javid attacks PM’s leadership style
Former British minister Sajid Javid delivered a withering attack on Boris Johnson’s leadership on Wednesday, telling him and his fellow lawmakers in their ruling Conservative Party that it was time for the prime minister to resign.
Javid stepped down as health minister on Tuesday, the first of a flurry of resignations of ministers who said they had lost confidence in Johnson and that he was not fit to govern.
Considered a possible contender to replace Johnson should he quit or be forced out, Javid listed a series of scandals that had embroiled the prime minister and his office in recent months, including the breaking of coronavirus lockdown rules, over which he had given Johnson the benefit of the doubt.
“At some point, we have to conclude that enough is enough. I believe that point is now,” he told parliament as lawmakers sat in silence and Johnson listened expressionless.
“I have concluded that the problem starts at the top and I believe that is not going to change. And that means that it is for those of us in a position who have responsibility to make that change.”
Just minutes earlier, an ebullient Johnson had vowed to fight on, telling his glum-faced lawmakers that he remained a vote winner.
‘Not fair on Tories’
Javid said it had not been fair to send government ministers out to defend Johnson in the media in recent months over various scandals, using lines from the prime minister’s Downing Street office “that don’t stand up and don’t hold up”.
“It’s not fair on Conservative members and voters who rightly expect better standards from the party they supported,” he added.
It was the second time Javid has left government. He quit as finance minister in 2020 after refusing to fire his political advisers as demanded by Johnson. He returned in the following year as health minister.
We cannot continue like this, says Sunak in letter.
Also read: Boris Johnson and the longest goodbye
British finance minister Rishi Sunak resigned on Tuesday, saying he had reluctantly come to the conclusion that “we cannot continue like this”.
“The public rightly expect government to be conducted properly, competently and seriously. I recognise this may be my last ministerial job, but I believe these standards are worth fighting for and that is why I am resigning,” he said on Twitter.
In his resignation letter to the prime minister, also posted on his Twitter account, Sunak pointed to “immense challenges” that Britain was facing, adding that the people were “ready to hear the truth”.
“In preparation for our proposed joint speech on the economy next week, it has become clear to me that our approaches are fundamentally different,” Sunak said.
“I am sad to be leaving Government but I have reluctantly come to the conclusion that we cannot continue like this,” Sunak finished before signing off his letter.
Former Sri Lanka President Gotabaya Rajapaksa arrived in Thailand Thursday evening following his departure from Singapore. Rajapaksa was granted entry into Thailand following a request from the Sri Lankan government, NewsWire reported. He left Singapore on Thursday after nearly a month's stay in Singapore. Sri Lankan Parliament Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena announced the official resignation of Rajapaksa on July 15. Sri Lanka has been facing its worst economic crisis since its independence.
China's high-tech Chinese research vessel, which was to dock at Sri Lanka's Hambantota Port, won't reach there as scheduled, according to a media report on Thursday, citing the port authorities. Newsfirst.lk website reported that the Harbour Master for the Hambantota Port said no vessel can enter the port without his permission. It said the Chinese ballistic missile and satellite tracking ship 'Yuan Wang 5' will not reach Hambantota Port on Thursday.
The average price of US retail gasoline fell below $4 per gallon on Thursday for the first time in months, giving some relief to drivers in the world's largest consumer of the fuel. The national average price for regular unleaded gas fell to $3.990 a gallon on Thursday, according to the American Automobile Association. The latest price drop may help President Joe Biden's administration and Democrats in Congress during November's midterm elections.
Russia and Ukraine accused each other of new shelling near the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant on Thursday ahead of a UN Security Council meeting to address concerns over the facility's security. Kyiv nuclear agency Energoatom said later that there had been fresh Russian shelling near one of the plant's six reactors that had caused "extensive smoke" and "several radiation sensors are damaged". The Security Council is expected to meet at 1900 GMT.
Much like with Covid-19, the monkeypox health crisis in the US is hitting Black and Hispanic Americans hard. Yet those groups are so far lagging in vaccination rates, early data obtained by Bloomberg News show. In some major US cities with outbreaks, White people are getting the majority of vaccinations, data collected by Bloomberg show. In Chicago, 55% of vaccines have gone to White people. In Washington, D.C., 63.5% of vaccine recipients identify as White.