‘A serious failure of leadership’: Sue Gray’s report on the Downing Street parties is officially out

The events ‘should not have been allowed’

Sue Gray’s report into the Downing Street parties has just been released, which concludes that there was not only “a serious failure of leadership” but also events which strictly “shouldn’t have been allowed”.

Sue Gray lists 16 gatherings that were in scope, and confirms that 12 of them are subject to Metropolitan Police investigation.

This follows the accusations that throughout lockdown, the government held over a dozen parties and social events. Meanwhile, the rest of the country were stuck inside and following the rules.

Gray wrote in her report: “Against the backdrop of the pandemic, when the government was asking citizens to accept far-reaching restrictions on their lives, some of the behaviour surrounding these gatherings is difficult to justify.

“At least some of the gatherings in question represent a serious failure to observe not just the high standards expected of those working at the heart of government but also of the standards expected of the entire British population at the time.
“At times it seems there was too little thought given to what was happening across the country in considering the appropriateness of some of these gatherings, the risks they presented to public health and how they might appear to the public.”

Boris Johnson is expected to face the Commons at 3.30pm for PMQ’s, where he will discuss these findings further.

The Prime Minister has also reportedly called a meeting at 6.30pm tonight with the Conservative party, where he presumably intends to convince his MPs to back him and not submit letters of no confidence to the 1922 Committee.

The full report can be found here.

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