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Former British finance minister Rishi Sunak on Sunday announced that he will run to be UK’s next prime minister, making it the second bid to lead the country in months.
‘The United Kingdom is a great country but we face a profound economic crisis. That’s why I am standing to be leader of the Conservative Party and your next prime minister,’ he said on Twitter.
Former British PM, Boris Johnson yesterday dramatically pulled out from what will have been an audacious bid to return to power within weeks of having been ousted, declaring that he would not run to replace outgoing leader Liz Truss.
The surprise decision, which the ex-leader said he had reached reluctantly after recognising he would not lead ‘a united party in parliament’, removes a major obstacle to his political foe, former finance minister Rishi Sunak, becoming prime minister.
That could now happen as soon as Monday.
Johnson, 58, said he had reached out to both Sunak and cabinet member Penny Mordaunt — who launched her leadership campaign on Friday — to ‘come together in the national interest’.
But the three of them had ‘not been able to work out a way of doing this’, he added.
‘Therefore I am afraid the best thing is that I do not allow my nomination to go forward and commit my support to whoever succeeds,’ he said in a statement.
Earlier Sunday, Sunak formally announced he was standing for the top job, just weeks after having failed in a first attempt.
The former finance minister vowed ‘integrity, professionalism, and accountability’ and to lead Britain out of ‘profound economic crisis’.
‘I want to fix our economy, unite our party and deliver for our country,’ he said in a short statement posted on Twitter confirming his widely expected candidacy.
The Tories have been forced into a second, this time expedited, leadership contest since the summer following Truss’s resignation after only 44 disastrous days into her tenure over her calamitous tax-slashing mini-budget.