The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Boris Johnson has faced new charges of lying after a photo of him drinking at a Downing Street party during a lockdown in 2020 on Tuesday.
Revelations came that Johnson was expected to release his long-awaited full report on the “Partigate” scandal, despite claims that he was trying to eliminate it.
Several revelations about the lockdown-breaking parties earlier this year caused widespread political and public outrage and jeopardized Johnson’s position.
But the heat was removed because of the possible revolt of his own MPs in the war in Ukraine and his harsh support for President Volodymyr Zelensky.
The images, released late Monday by ITV News, were taken during a farewell party for Johnson’s communications chief, Lee Kane, on November 13, 2020, just days after the government ordered a second lockdown and banned the household mix.
Johnson is seen holding a glass and chatting with several people around the table with bottles of wine and food.
Police investigated the incident as part of the “Partigate” investigation and fined one person, but not Johnson.
When asked about the rally in Parliament last December, he insisted that there were no parties on that date and that no rules had been broken.
Johnson has been fined for attending Downing Street in June 2020 for an amazing birthday party, but has not been fined for any other event.
Angela Rainer, deputy leader of the main opposition Labor Party, said it was “surprising” that Johnson had not been fined for the November rally.
He told ITV News that it was “quite clear” that there was a party that was not a work event, calling it “admirable” and not being fined.
“He knew he had broken the rules, and he always knew it and yet he tried to get away from it,” he added.
“He has tried to lie to the British people, and he has tried to lie to Parliament,” Rainer said.
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But Transportation Secretary Grant Shaps tried to protect Johnson on Tuesday, saying new pictures showed he was not “obviously” partying.
“I think he was told to go and say thank you to a member of staff who was leaving, picked up a glass from them and I imagine he came in and out very quickly, which is probably why the police did not issue a specific penalty notice. The Prime Minister, “Shaps told BBC Radio.
Chapps said he doesn’t think the London Metropolitan Police need to explain why Johnson was not fined for the event.
The Times reported on Tuesday that Johnson had pressured civilian employee Sue Gree to drop her much-anticipated report.
Sky News quoted a source as saying that Johnson asked what more police had to say after they finished their work.
Rainer Gray joined a chorus of opposition voices calling for the report to be released “as soon as possible.”
“The full report – and all the evidence – must be released without delay,” he tweeted.
“There is little more to cover than this deceitful, unfaithful prime minister.”
The Mets said Thursday they have completed their “partisan” investigation, imposing a total of 126 fines for multiple gatherings in and around Downing Street.
Among those fined were Johnson, his wife Carrie and Finance Minister Rishi Sunak.
Johnson’s fine – the first for a current British prime minister – has prompted calls for him to resign or be ousted.
He apologized for violating the Covid regulations but refused to resign.
He is facing an investigation by a parliamentary committee into his past denial of breach of lockdown law in the House of Commons.
(Except for the title, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and was published from a syndicated feed.)