Johnson has faced widespread calls from opposition, and even from within his own party to resign over ‘partygate’ fines
By: Chandrashekar Bhat
Britain’s opposition Labour leader Keir Starmer said the jeering faced by prime minister Boris Johnson reflected the public sentiment about the government.
Johnson was booed when he arrived at St Paul’s Cathedral in London for a Service of Thanksgiving for Queen Elizabeth on Friday. But the prime minister, who was accompanied by his wife Carrie, smiled and walked on even as others in the crowd clapped and cheered.
However, there was silence when Starmer arrived at the venue a few minutes later.
The former lawyer said he was “not surprised” by the boos that greeted the prime minister because people were “fed up with the government” which, he said, failed to tame the surging inflation.
“I think so many people across the country are fed up with the government, particularly its inaction on the cost of living,” Starmer told PA Media in Stratford.
“They booed the prime minister, they are fed up with the government, but the vast majority were there to say thank you to the Queen…”
However, culture secretary Nadine Dorries saw the positive side of the incident, saying there were more cheers than jeers.
“There were far, far more cheers, but that doesn’t make a good headline does it,” Dorries tweeted.
Britain’s inflation rate surged to a 40-year high on soaring energy costs, official data showed in May, sparking calls for an emergency government budget to combat a worsening cost-of-living crisis.
Annual inflation soared to 9.0 per cent in April from 7.0 per cent in March, the Office for National Statistics said, delivering another heavy blow to Britons whose wages were already failing to keep pace with surging prices.
Johnson swept to power in 2019 on a promise to complete Britain’s exit from the European Union. But the cost of living crisis and revelations over his conduct during the pandemic have sent his personal popularity plummeting in opinion polls, and a growing number of lawmakers in his own party have called for Johnson to quit.
Starmer had said earlier that Johnson should step down, saying the investigation into the “partygate” showed the government believed there was one rule for them and another for everyone else.