Indian-origin Suella Braverman’s resignation from the post of UK Home Secretary shows “great integrity” and the move was not in response to a row over immigration, Conservative MP and Northern Ireland minister Steve Baker said on Thursday.
“Suella made a mistake… She sent a document using her personal e-mail. She knows that is a breach of rules technically and so she has chosen to resign. I think it shows great integrity,” Baker told UK-based TalkTV’s First Edition.
Braverman’s resignation comes amid political and economic turmoil in Britain, marking the second departure of a senior minister in in less than a week. Kwasi Kwarteng was removed as the finance minister last week, and was replaced by Jeremy Hunt.
According to the Daily Mail, “Truss sacked Braverman after a 90-minute shouting match…”
Braverman had launched a scathing attack on Truss, accusing her of breaking key pledges and wobbling over manifesto commitments such as reduced migration, Daily Mail reported.
“It is absolutely not a row about immigration. I am clear that Suella would be continuing if she had not made the mistake. I have spoken to Suella in the course of the day, she is in good spirits…
“She is a friend of Truss and wants her to succeed,” Baker told First Edition.
Earlier this month, the 42 year-old with Indian roots sparked an immigration row saying that Indians comprise the “largest group of people who overstay” their visas in the UK, thus putting the Free Trade Agreement between the two nations in jeopardy.
Meanwhile, signalling that the UK needs a change of direction, Baker also said that former British Chancellor of Indian-origin Rishi Sunak would make a good Prime Minister.
“I feel the country needs a change of direction and Rishi did not want to offer that. Rishi would be a good Prime Minister… We have a number of people in the party who could be good Prime ministers,” Baker told ITV’s Peston.
Barely two months after losing to Liz Truss in the race for UK Prime Minister, Sunak has once again been emerging as the favourite to replace her with 100 Tory MPs considering a no-confidence motion against her.
A YouGov poll of Tory members found that 55 percent would now vote for 42-year-old Sunak if they were able to vote again, while just 25 per cent would vote for Truss.
Baker, a staunch Brexiteer, claimed that Truss “cannot be removed” from No 10. He told ITV’s Peston: “The Prime Minister cannot be removed; whether she goes or not is up to her.”
According to a Bloomberg report, Conservative MPs are utterly divided over who should take over.
“Rebellious Conservative MPs are destroying the capacity for the party to govern,” Baker told ITV Peston and instead, asked the MPs to do it privately.
Sunak’s warnings about Truss’s economic plans have been largely borne out, which gives him credibility with markets.
“Yet he has large numbers of enemies in the Tory party. There are about 100 MPs on the ideological right of the party — including ardent Brexiteers and supporters of Johnson — who are determined to prevent a Sunak premiership,” the Bloomberg reported.