Nadhim Zahawi has called on Boris Johnson to resign just over a day after he was named chancellor of his government as more cabinet ministers have resigned.
In a public letter, Zahawi said he was “heartbroken” that Johnson hadn’t listened to his advice as a friend of over 30 years.
“Prime Minister: This is unsustainable and it’s only going to get worse: for you, for the Conservative Party and most importantly for the whole country. You have to do the right thing and go now,” he said, but came close to resigning himself.
Michelle Donelan, the education secretary appointed this week, also resigned, saying Cabinet must force Johnson’s hand. She succeeded Brandon Lewis, the Northern Ireland Secretary, who also resigned on Thursday morning.
Lewis said: “Decent and responsible government is based on honesty, integrity and mutual respect – it is a matter of deep personal regret that I have to leave government as I no longer believe those values are upheld.”
Recent developments make it increasingly likely that Johnson will not be able to see through the day as Prime Minister, although No 10 insisted on Wednesday night that he wanted to “keep fighting”.