All the times Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak denied Partygate wrongdoing

All the times Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak denied Partygate wrongdoing
Partygate: Clip resurfaces of Rishi Sunak denying he attended lockdown parties
Independent TV

More than 50 fines have been issued over law-breaking parties held at Downing Street and Whitehall at the height of the pandemic. Among those faced with a penalty were prime minister Boris Johnson and chancellor Rishi Sunak – and now people are cringing back at their past Partygate comments.

The reports of Downing Street parties first emerged in December last year. Johnson initially insisted that "guidelines were followed at all times" – that was until rumours of other gatherings emerged.

The prime minister later apologised for attending drinks in the Downing Street garden but told people he was under the impression it was a work event.

Sunak was also quizzed in the Commons about his involvement in any of the pandemic parties. He was asked whether he had attended any alleged Christmas parties, to which he responded: "No, I did not attend any parties."

Johnson called for an inquiry into the rule-breaking parties, led by senior civil servant Sue Gray who said there had been a "failure of leadership" in Downing Street in her interim report. When Gray submitted the information to officers, they launched their own investigation.

The prime minister insisted that people waited until the police investigation was over – which has started to backfire. The full report cannot be released until the Met has finished the investigation.

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Labour has declared the pair "unfit to govern" and called on them to go. Meanwhile, Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey said: "If Boris Johnson won't resign, Conservative MPs must show him the door."

Johnson previously repeatedly refused to say if he would resign if he was fined by the police for breaking Covid laws at the Downing Street parties.

And now, social media have banded together to reflect on all the times the pair's statements aged horrifically.

A No 10 spokeswoman said: "The prime minister and chancellor of the exchequer have today received notification that the Metropolitan police intend to issue them with fixed penalty notices."

In a statement, Scotland Yard said: "We are making every effort to progress this investigation at speed, this includes continuing to assess significant amounts of investigative material from which further referrals may be made to ACRO (Criminal Records Office)."

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