Ex-chancellor Sajid Javid blasts PM’s conditions for staying in Cabinet

Clay Curtis
February 15, 2020

Johnson, who had wanted to minimise any disruption from his long-planned cabinet revamp, on Thursday quickly replaced Sajid Javid with his deputy Rishi Sunak, a loyal supporter of the Prime Minister who is often put before the media to sell government policy.

The resignation follows rumours of tensions between Javid and the prime minister's senior adviser Dominic Cummings.

Chancellor Javid had been widely expected to keep his job in the Cabinet shakeup.

It's understood that Javid - who has served as Britain's finance minister since July 2019 - made a decision to quit his role after refusing No 10's request to sack his advisers, according to several media reports.

But the Chancellor of the Exchequer's resignation - which some commentators said might have been sought by Johnson's team all along - added to a sense that the Prime Minister would brook no dissent and wanted to have more control over the Treasury.

Smith, who had been in charge of parliamentary discipline for Johnson's predecessor, Theresa May, was the first minister to lose his job in the reshuffle. "A government in chaos within weeks of an election", said John McDonnell, Labour's finance spokesman.

The prime minister's office could not confirm Thursday whether the budget would take place as scheduled on March 11. And even with a deal, the United Kingdom faces a huge adjustment when decades of seamless trade and travel with the European Union end at the start of 2021.

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Much of the country is set to be buffeted by gusts of around 50mph, although coastal regions may experience heavier winds. An amber alert for rain covers parts of Dumfries and Galloway and the Borders from 12:00 to 23:00 on Saturday.

- Geoffrey Cox was sacked as attorney general.

Most of the key players, including Home Secretary Priti Patel, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove, retained their positions.

The UK PM has also sacked Northern Ireland Secretary Julian Smith, who had been widely praised for helping to end a political deadlock that left Northern Ireland without a regional government and assembly for three years.

After pressure from the British and Irish governments, the main Irish nationalist and British unionist power-sharing parties returned to work last month.

Brandon Lewis was appointed as Northern Ireland Secretary.

The 51-year-old Alok Sharma has been appointed as the Business Secretary in the British Cabinet.

Planning for that has gotten off to a rocky start, with Johnson last week firing Claire O'Neill, a former British government minister appointed previous year to head up the event.

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