Search

Norfolk MP calls on Dominic Cummings to resign as pressure mounts on the prime minister’s chief aide

PUBLISHED: 19:57 27 May 2020 | UPDATED: 19:57 27 May 2020

George Freeman Mid Norfolk MP. Picture: Victoria Pertusa

George Freeman Mid Norfolk MP. Picture: Victoria Pertusa

Archant

The MP for Mid-Norfolk has added his name to the list of those calling for the prime minister’s chief aide, Dominic Cummings, to resign over the controversial journey he made to Durham during lockdown.

Dominic Cummings, senior aide to Boris Johnson. Pic: Jonathan Brady/PA WireDominic Cummings, senior aide to Boris Johnson. Pic: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

In a press conference on Monday, Mr Cummings defended a 260-mile trip from London to Durham he made with his family during lockdown, saying he believed he behaved “reasonably”.

Now, Mid-Norfolk MP George Freeman has added his name to the list of MPs from across the political spectrum calling for Mr Cummings to resign.

READ MORE: Dominic Cummings statement: ‘I behaved legally and reasonably’ in driving to Durham

Mr Freeman said he had received close to 1,000 emails in the last 48 hours from “people who do not usually email their MP, expressing their anger at how Mr Cummings has let down the national effort to defeat the pandemic.”

He said: “It has become clear from my inbox that the scale and depth of the anger felt by constituents is like nothing I have seen in 10 years. Many across Mid-Norfolk are angry that their sacrifices for the greater good seem not to have been matched by such a senior figure in government.

“Many have also asked how or why they can be expected to comply with instructions the PM’s own senior advisor can’t stick to.

“This situation clearly can’t be allowed to go on.”

READ MORE: MP changes view and says Dominic Cummings should resign after flood of angry emails

On Monday, morning, Mr Freeman said Mr Cummings needed to give a “clear, coherent and acceptable account and an apology to the British people for not abiding by his own instructions” or else he should resign.

After the conference, he tweeted: “Hmm. Not great. Downing Street Covid briefing and PM’s important announcement on easing lockdown overwhelmed by continuing questions and controversy on #Domnishambles #curfewgate.”

READ MORE: What has your MP said about the Dominic Cummings controversy?

In the letter issued by Mr Freeman on Wednesday, he said he had been “determined to give [Mr Cummings] a fair hearing and, in the face of a coherent account, the benefit of the doubt.”

But that as “the full story unfolded” he had found his “credibility and patience was stretched.”

“It’s clear to me that Mr Cummings’ actions have seriously undermined the authority of the government, the prime minister and the public health message,” he said.

Mr Freeman added that he felt the “national confidence in, and consent to abide by, our government public health messaging has been profoundly damaged.”

“I believe Mr Cummings must now apologise and resign his post, so that we can rebuild public trust and consent, and focus on the vital task of defeating this virus and navigating our economy and society through a phased end of lockdown as effectively as possible.”


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Dereham Times. Click the link in the orange box below for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years, through good times and bad, serving as your advocate and trusted source of local information. Our industry is facing testing times, which is why I’m asking for your support. Every single contribution will help us continue to produce award-winning local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Thank you.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Dereham Times