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BBC Newsnight: Ian Blackford lambasts Boris Johnson over No 10 party – ‘Stench of sleaze!’

In yet another scathing attack, the SNP leader in the House of Commons has raised serious questions over the Boris-led Government and its way of tackling the pandemic. Speaking on BBC Newsnight, the 60-year-old Member of Parliament said that “people are offended by a government that simply didn’t seem to know how to behave”.

The debate comes at the time when it was revealed that the PM gave full backing to Martin Reynolds, Johnson’s principal private secretary, who “continues in his role” despite inviting more than 100 employees to ‘bring their own booze’ to the No 10 party.

Mr Blackford said: “The fact is, an hour after the Culture Secretary gave a press conference in Downing Street reminding people that you could only meet outdoors with one other person, invitations had gone out to 100 people to come and meet in the Downing Street garden.

“You are judged by your actions. The fact is the Prime Minister has behaved in a way which has been contentious to the public.”

He further lashed out at Mr Johnson for holding the party at the time when the entire nation was having a hard time in dealing with the loss caused due to the pandemic.

He said: “When you see the public reaction to what’s going on, when people were behaving as they were expected and to, recognising they couldn’t be with loved ones when they were dying in hospital, couldn’t visit elderly relatives in care homes.

“And they see everything that’s going on. The stories of the parties have been around for weeks.

“But it’s the explosive details of what came out yesterday of the principal private secretary of the Prime Minister inviting people to bring your own booze party.”

When asked about the successful vaccination figures of Britain, he said: “Of course we can all celebrate the success of the vaccines but when people were making enormous sacrifices to see a Prime Minister that has behaved the way he has done.

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Talking about Mr Johnson’s growing “unpopularity” in Scotland and how it feeds into the debate over Scottish independence, he said: “He is staggeringly unpopular throughout the UK now. We have to win our own arguments in Scotland.

“Of course I want Scotland to become independent and we’ll win that debate on the basis of the proposition we put forward but we can’t stand back and allow him to behave the way he has done.

“He needs to understand he should be resigning tonight, and if he doesn’t do that Conservative MPs need to hold him to account.”



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