Outgoing British Prime Minister Boris Johnson arrives to speak outside Downing StreetInternationalIndiaAfricaEarlier this week, the UK’s House of Commons said that former Prime Minister Boris Johnson will testify before Parliament’s Committee of Privileges on 22 March about the parties that were held at his office during the COVID-19 lockdowns as part of an ongoing investigation.Boris Johnson is about to release new evidence that exonerates him in the case of parties during the COVID-19 pandemic, a UK newspaper reported, citing sources.
“It contains new evidence that helps his case,” the newspaper quotes a source as saying. “His case is that he told Parliament what he believed to be true at the time. There is documentary evidence which will show that he was advised to say what he went on and said.”
According to reports, the evidence will include messages from the former prime minister’s advisers telling him that no rules were broken during the parties.Johnson will testify before Parliament’s Committee of Privileges on 22 March.The scandal erupted after it emerged that several social gatherings had been held at Johnson’s offices throughout 2020 and 2021, flouting COVID-19 social distancing rules. The situation was aggravated by reports that two more parties were held on 16 April last year, on the eve of Prince Philip’s funeral, when the UK still maintained COVID-19 restrictions and was in national mourning. Johnson later apologized and said he had paid the fine issued by the Metropolitan Police.Johnson became prime minister in July 2019 and stepped down in September 2022 on the back of multiple scandals over parties at his office during the COVID-19 lockdowns.