Pressure on Boris Johnson mounts as more lockdown parties at Downing Street revealed
Opposition parties, Tory MPs call on prime minister to resign over boozy parties at No 10
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Friday came under fire again due to two more boozy parties held at Downing Street last year.
The parties, one of which was held on the eve before the funeral of the Queen's husband in April 2020, have added on the pressure Johnson is already suffering in the hands of the opposition parties, his party's backbenchers as well as the public.
The parties came to light with an exclusive report from The Telegraph. The daily reported that “Downing Street staff drank alcohol into the early hours at two leaving events the night before Prince Philip's socially distanced funeral.”
On April 16, 2021, the country was in public mourning because of the passing of the prince and flags on government buildings flew half-mast.
Queen Elizabeth was seen attending the funeral of her husband of 74 years, wearing a face mask and socially distanced from the rest of her family at Windsor Castle because of the pandemic restrictions.
Eye-witnesses “alleged that excessive alcohol was drunk, while at points, guests danced,” according to the daily.
“The gatherings stretched late into the night - well beyond midnight, according to one source.”
A spokeswoman for the prime minister said his former director of communications, James Slack, "gave a farewell speech" at one of the events.
Slack apologized Friday for the “anger and hurt” caused by the party.
He said: “I wish to apologise unreservedly for the anger and hurt caused. This event should not have happened at the time that it did. I am deeply sorry, and take full responsibility.”
The revelation of more parties at the Downing Street during the COVID-19 lockdown has now put more pressure on Johnson, who apologized for attending a party in May 2020.
On Friday, Andrew Bridgen, a Conservative MP who has supported Johnson in delivering Brexit, said the premier should resign, joining a few other politicians, including the leader of the Scottish Conservatives, Douglas Ross.
“I will always be grateful for what Boris has achieved and his legacy should be cemented now by a dignified exit from politics,” he wrote on Twitter.