A U.K. conservative MP has slammed prime minister Liz Truss’ administration and its “inexcusable” handling of a vote on fracking in Parliament, he told BBC News on Wednesday evening.
The opposition Labour party brought forward a motion to ban shale gas fracking in the U.K. after Truss’ administration vowed to lift the ban to alleviate the energy crisis in the country.
The government ultimately won the vote, with 326 votes opposing Labour’s motion but the affair in Parliament descended into more chaos than usual on Wednesday evening as more than 40 Conservative MPs, including former prime minister Boris Johnson, abstained from the vote. Some also alleged that they were bullied into voting with the government.
Conservative MP Charles Walker spoke to the BBC after politicians voted, saying the whole affair was “inexcusable” and criticized Tory MPs who voted in their own interest.
“I’ve had enough of talentless people putting their tick in the right box, not because it’s in the national interest, but because it’s in their personal interest to achieve ministerial position,” he fumed.
“This is an absolute disgrace. As a Tory MP of 17 years, who’s never been a minister, who’s got on with it loyally most of the time,” he said.
“I think it’s a shambles and a disgrace. I think it is utterly appalling. I’m livid.”
Walker voted against the motion.
He was visibly furious when asked if the government’s reputation could be salvaged after the vote and gave a message to those who voted for Liz Truss to become prime minister in the leadership contest last month
Conservative MP Charles Walker sitting alongside the 1922 Committee in the Houses of Parliament in London in June 2019.
stefan rousseau/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images
“I really shouldn’t say this but I hope all those people that put Liz Truss in Number 10, I hope it was worth it, I hope it was worth it for the ministerial red box, I hope it was worth it to sit around the Cabinet table because the damage they have done to our party is extraordinary,” he said.
A nightmare week for Truss
Britain’s former Home Secretary Suella Braverman resigns.
adrian dennis/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images
Liz Truss’s administration has seen a revolving door for politicians this week and some say she has 12 hours to turn it all around.
Shortly after the fracking vote, it emerged that Conservative chief whip Wendy Morton and her deputy Craig Whittaker had resigned from government, though the prime ministers’ press office maintained they both will stay in their posts.
The U.K’s interior minister Suella Braverman also resigned on Wednesday evening over breaching official ministerial rules by sharing government documents through her personal email. She has become the shortest-serving home secretary since World War II.
In her resignation letter, she said she had “concerns about the direction of this government”.
It all started with former finance minister Kwasi Kwarteng, who was “asked” to step down by Truss, his close confidant, last Friday. He was six weeks into arguably the second most powerful job in government.
Confidence in Truss from MPs has been waning since the economic turmoil from the mini-budget. Though she is safe from a leadership challenge according to Conservative party rules, lawmakers may change them if they so wish. Rumors have been swirling about how many MPs have lodged letters of no-confidence in Truss.