Friday 23 February 2024
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Ruth Edwards MP resigns as parliamentary secretary

Ruth Edwards, Rushcliffe’s MP, has written to Boris Johnson this afternoon (Wednesday) offering her resignation as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Scotland office.


Ashfield MP Lee Anderson, a former Boris Johnson loyalist, and Robert Jenrick, MP for Newark, also withdrew their support for Mr Johnson on July 6.

It comes after Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Health Secretary Sajid Javid both resigned within minutes of each other on Tuesday evening.

The decision relates to Tamworth MP Chris Pincher, who resigned from his post as Deputy Chief Whip last week after he was accused of ‘groping two men in a private members’ club.’

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Earlier on Tuesday, it was confirmed that Boris Johnson was previously told about an investigation into Mr Pincher’s inappropriate behaviour in 2019 after repeated initial statements from Number 10 that Mr Johnson was unaware of specific allegations against his former deputy chief whip when he appointed him to the role. Mr Johnson has since apologised.

Mrs Edwards said she was proud of everything the Government had achieved so far, but added:

“This is why I was heartbroken to learn on Wednesday that you were made aware of

It is with great sadness that I must offer you my resignation as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Scotland Office.

Letter Ruth Edwards MP

‘I am deeply proud of everything your Government has achieved in the last two and a half years. We havedelivered record investment into the East Midlands, some of the most ambitious progress towards netzero in the world, one of the fastest vaccine rollouts and shown international leadership in standing up toRussia’s invasion of Ukraine.

‘Some of the work I have been most proud to support is the work by successive ministers at the HomeOffice and Ministry of Justice to support survivors of domestic abuse and sexual violence.

‘That is why I was heartbroken to learn on Wednesday that you were made aware of serious allegations of sexual assault against Chris Pincher and that, despite this, you went on to appoint him, not just to another government role, but to a role of such sensitivity, where he would deal with both vulnerable colleagues and members of staff who may have been victims of such assaults themselves.

‘I know my resignation will carry little weight in the grand scheme of things. But when I leave this job, either of my own will or that of my constituents, I need to be able to do so with my self respect intact. I amdeeply saddened to say that this is no longer compatible with continuing to serve in a governmentwhose leadership has turned a blind eye to allegations of sexual assault within its own ranks.

‘It has been my great privilege to work with my Secretary of State, Alister Jack, for the last two years. Ihave been fortunate to have been given the opportunity to learn from one of the most able, honourable and hardworking ministers in Government.

‘I want to place on record my sincere thanks to you, for everything you have done to see our country through the pandemic, andfor the way in which you have worked with me and my constituents to tackle important issues such as making communitydefibrillators more affordable. I also want to reiterate my very great sadness that things have come to this.’

Ruth Edwards MP

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