Lord Geidt: UK ethics adviser resigns after being placed in ‘impossible and abhorrent position’

Downing Street has published a letter from Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s former ethics adviser, Lord Geidt, who resigned suddenly on Wednesday June 15. Notably, Christopher Geidt is the second official to leave his post in two years in an apparent protest against Johnson’s actions. In his resignation letter to Johnson, Lord Geidt said “this request has placed me in an impossible and odious position” and that he can have “no part in it”.

Without divulging details, he referred to a plan that risked breaching the government’s ministerial code. Although he said an intention to break the code to serve a political end would have made a “mockery” of the rules.

Meanwhile, Downing Street also released Johnson’s response to Geidt’s resignation letter. He said he sought Geidt’s “advice on the national interest to protect a crucial industry” through retaliatory trade tariffs. Geidt’s role was to advise Johnson on matters relating to the ministerial code of conduct.

Britain’s prime minister and his government have come under fire for hosting booze-fueled parties at No 10 when such gatherings were banned across the country due to the coronavirus lockdown. After investigation, some members of the government were fined.

It is understood Geidt was unhappy with the Prime Minister’s handling of the Partygate scandal. A friend of Lord Geidt told the BBC he was ‘deeply saddened that such an honorable and dedicated civil servant has been placed in a position where he feels compelled to resign’.

Johnson wrote: “My intention was to ask your opinion on the national interest in protecting a crucial industry, which is protected in other European countries and would suffer material harm if we do not continue to apply such tariffs.”

“By seeking your opinion before any decision is taken, I was seeking to ensure that we were acting correctly in accordance with the ministerial code,” he added.


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Post expires at 2:38pm on Sunday June 26th, 2022