Mirror Online: LONDON, England, By Mikey Smith – Boris Johnson is partying while Britain boils, as he is hosting a lavish goodbye bash at Chequers on Sunday.
The PM skipped out on his second emergency meeting in a row today, leaving Cabinet Office Minister Kit Malthouse to deal with the record temperatures expected this week.
Meanwhile, invites went out to a ‘leaving do’ at the PM’s grace-and-favour country house in Buckinghamshire, which has an indoor swimming pool.
Labour accused Mr Johnson of being “missing in action”, with his penchant for partying during times of crisis a running theme of his premiership.
He infamously missed five Cobra meetings while the Government sleepwalked into the Covid-19 pandemic.
And he defended attending leaving parties for No10 staff throughout the pandemic, when indoor gatherings were banned.
Public outrage over rule-breaking parties in Downing Street, first revealed by the Mirror, played a key part in his downfall.
A Number 10 spokeswoman said tomorrow’s party was a “private event with no taxpayers’ money being spent.”
They declined to say who had been invited to the party.
“ Boris Johnson has gone missing in action again,” Deputy Labour leader Angela Rayner said.
Kit Malthouse had to deal with the record temperatures expected at the beginning of next week (
“He’s back to his old tricks of skipping important COBRA meetings. Where’s the plan for the delivery of essential services and how people will be kept safe at work, on transport, in schools, hospitals and care homes?
“The public will have no confidence in this zombie Conservative government responding swiftly and decisively to this national emergency as this disgraced Prime Minister prepares to party while Britain boils.
“If he still can’t take the responsibility of the job, he should leave right now.”
The party will be at Chequers – PA
Mr Johnson and wife Carrie were this month forced to scrap plans to hold a delayed wedding reception at Chequers after a fierce backlash.
The Mirror revealed the couple had planned a party at the grace and favour mansion later this month to mark their marriage – and sources claimed the do was part of the reason Mr Johnson wanted to cling on in Downing Street.
But No10 later confirmed the wedding party would now be held elsewhere – and is not thought to be the same as the party planned for tomorrow.
It comes as the PM was urged not to “skive off” in his last week at work, amid rumours he planned to skip his final PMQs this Wednesday.
And he was accused of presiding over a “zombie government” with a string of Cabinet ministers failing to turn up to key engagements.
No10 has insisted the PM plans to appear in the commons as scheduled, for his final grilling from MPs – and says there are “no plans currently” for him to be out of the country this week.
But rumours spread around Westminster that he planned to skip his final weekly clash with Keir Starmer after Mr Johnson hinted last week’s session could be his last.
“The next leader of my party may be elected by acclamation, so it’s possible this will be our last confrontation… it’s possible,” he said.
Lib Dem deputy leader Daisy Cooper said: “If Boris Johnson does skip PMQs next week then it’s just further proof that he’s already checked out as Prime Minister, content to cash in on all the perks but do none of the work.”
Home Secretary Priti Patel was due to appear before the Home Affairs committee on Wednesday, but cancelled the night before, angering members.
Justice Secretary Mr Raab was set to attend the Joint Committee on Human Rights next week.
And Labour’s Wes Streeting branded his Tory opposite number, new health secretary Steve Barclay “the invisible man”.
Home Secretary Priti Patel attends a cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street – REUTERS
“You have been Secretary of State for Health and Social Care for 10 days now, but you are yet to say anything about the heatwave and unprecedented pressures our emergency services are facing,” he wrote.
Ms Cooper added: “We deserve far better than a lame duck Government that is trying to avoid all responsibility to address the soaring cost of living and the crisis facing our NHS.
“The Prime Minister should resign immediately.”
Top Feature Photo: Boris Johnson is hosting a lavish goodbye party REUTERS