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Britain's Boris Johnson: a timeline of controversy

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[British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson]

“Mr. Speaker, I want to apologize.”

When did things start to unravel for Boris Johnson?

[Labour leader, Keir Starmer]

"He was hosting boozy parties in Downing Street."

[Deputy Labour leader, Angela Rayner]

"He's lied to the British public, he's lied to parliament."

[Member of Parliament, Helen Morgan]

"Boris Johnson, the party is over'."

[Member of Parliament, Turner]

"He must resign."

From sleaze scandal to lockdown parties,

recent events badly tarnished the leadership credentials of Britain’s Prime Minister.

This timeline tracks some of the missteps and controversies that got him to this point.

November 30, 2021 / Lockdown Christmas party report

In November, the Mirror publishes the first of many media reports

about Christmas parties taking place in government offices

including Johnson's own Downing Street office, in December 2020.

At that time, such gatherings were banned because of a coronavirus lockdown.

In fact this was the PM’s message to the public:

[British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson]

"Given the early evidence we have on this new variant of the virus, the potential risk it poses, it is with a very heavy heart I must tell you we cannot continue with Christmas as planned."

December 7, 2021 / Video of staff joking about party

In December Johnson told journalists that no lockdown restrictions were broken.

Hours later.. a leaked video emerged showing his staff laughing and joking

over how to explain a gathering in Downing Street.

December 8, 2021 / Johnson apologizes, aide resigns

The next day, Johnson apologized and his then press secretary, resigned.

[Adviser to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Allegra Stratton]

"The British people have made immense sacrifices in the ongoing battle against COVID-19. I now fear that my comments in the leaked video of the 20th of December last year become a distraction in that fight. My remarks seemed to make light of the rules. “

[British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson]

“I was also furious to see that clip and Mr Speaker, I apologize, I apologize unreservedly for the offence it has caused up and down the country and I apologise for the impression that it gives.''

December 9, 2021 / Conservative fined over apartment refurbishment

On December 9th Johnson's party - the Conservatives – are fined $23,500 by the electoral watchdog

for failing to accurately report a donation that helped fund the refurbishment of the prime minister's official residence.

December 14, 2021 / Conservative lawmakers rebel over Covid measures

Several days later on the 14th of December, more than 100 of Johnson's Conservative lawmakers voted against his new coronavirus restrictions,

dealing a blow to his authority and raising more questions about his leadership.

December 19, 2021 / Garden party photo published

On the December 19th, more controversy.

This time a photo of Johnson and more than a dozen other people

drinking wine in the garden of his Downing Street residence

taken during a the first COVID-19 lockdown in May 2020.

At that time, this was the governments message to the public on gatherings:

[British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson]

"You must obey the rules on social distancing and to enforce those rules we will increase the fines for the small minority who break them."

January 10, 2022 / Leaked email reveals lockdown party invite

In January broadcaster ITV publishes a leaked email from Johnson's private secretary

inviting more than 100 people to a - quote - "bring your own booze" party in the garden of Downing Street in May 2020.

ITV says Johnson and his partner Carrie were among the 40 or so people who attended.

January 12, 2022 / Johnson admits he attended the party

[British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson]

"Mr Speaker, I want to apologize. // When I went into that garden just after 6 on the 20th of May 2020 to thank groups of staff before going back into my office 25 minutes later to continue working, I believed implicitly that this was a work event."

[Labour leader, Keir Starmer]

"He's finally been forced to admit what everyone knew when the whole country was locked down. He was hosting boozy parties in Downing Street. Yes. Is he now going to do the decent thing and resign?"

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