Boris Johnson won't remain Prime Minister 'for too much longer', says Ian Blackford

21 April 2022, 19:41 | Updated: 21 April 2022, 19:48

'I don't believe that Boris Johnson is going to remain Prime Minister for too much longer'

By Liam Gould

Leader of the Scottish National Party at Westminster Ian Blackford has told LBC that he doesn't believe Boris Johnson will remain Prime Minister "for too much longer".

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Mr Johnson will face a parliamentary investigation into whether he misled MPs about lockdown-breaking parties at No10.

The Prime Minister, who has been accused of lying about lockdown parties after being fined by the Metropolitan Police, insists he has "nothing to hide".

MPs were unanimous in their decision on Thursday, agreeing that a committee should look into whether the Prime Minister misled them.

Speaking on LBC's Tonight with Andrew Marr, Mr Blackford said: "I suspect as you've been talking there that this story's not going to go away. We've got local elections in a couple of weeks, but we know beyond that we're going to see the judgement on the investigation that they're still carrying out.

"I don't believe that Boris Johnson is going to remain the Prime Minister for too much longer."

He added: "I even wonder, Andrew, whether we'll actually really get to the meat of any inquiry because I suspect in the cold light of day and Conservative MPs look at the hard facts on what's going on, they'll make their own judgements on this."

When asked by Andrew on his speech to the House of Commons where he called Boris Johnson a "liar", Mr Blackford - who took advice from clerks - said: "You have to be careful for very good reasons."

"I think you know I've been fairly dogged the last few months about holding the Prime Minister to account. I'm pleased Parliament acted in the way it did today."

"I'm pleased that members across the House have responded how they have because I see this as a very serious moment for a Prime Minister that has been charged by the police and had the fixed penalty notice - the lying to Parliament that I've talked about, and what I believe is, misleading the House of Commons."

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Boris Johnson won't remain Prime Minister 'for too much longer', says Ian Blackford. Picture: Alamy

It comes after Mr Blackford made a speech to the House of Commons that repeatedly called Mr Johnson a "liar."

Speaking to the House, Mr Blackford said: "Mr Speaker, there is one reason why it is so important that this motion is debated and passed today.

"Because, at the very heart of the scandal there is one thing that needs to be said, one thing that needs to be heard and it is the very reason that we all need to act.

"The reason is this that the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom is a liar.

"I honestly believe that it is right that we are slow to use that word, but I equally believe that it is right that we should never be slow to say it and to call it out when it is so obviously true."

Mr Blackford added: "Members across this House know it to be true and the public have long known that.

"And that is why it needs to be said today and why we all need to act."

The comments were not met with an intervention by Speaker of the House Sir Lindsay Hoyle.

When asked by Andrew how Mr Blackford could make the comments, he replied: "In the context of that debate, where I was talking about the Prime Minister's behaviour, then it's permissible in those circumstances to be able to use that word in a way that you wouldn't normally do - and for very good reasons."

Mr Johnson will be referred to the Parliamentary Privileges committee for the investigation, but the probe won't start until after the Met has completed its inquiry.

But a Metropolitan Police spokesman said earlier: "Whilst the investigation will continue during the pre-election period, due to the restrictions around communicating before the May local elections, we will not provide further updates until after May 5."