Defeat for Boris Johnson: Conservatives lose two by-elections

Boris Johnson, Prime Minister of Great Britain, leaves 10 Downing Street.Photo: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire/dpa

Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservatives have suffered heavy defeats in two by-elections: The Tories lost to one seat each in by-elections in both the Tiverton and Honiton constituency in south-west England and the Wakefield constituency in northern England on Thursday.

The Conservatives lost Tiverton and Honiton, where they had been MPs for more than a hundred years, to the Liberal Democrats, according to results released early Friday morning. In Wakefield the Labor Party prevailed.

As a result of the electoral defeat, the leader of the Conservatives resigns. “Someone has to take responsibility,” said Oliver Dowden on Friday. “I have come to the conclusion that it would not be right for me to remain in office under the circumstances.”

The Tiverton and Honiton by-election was made necessary because MP Neil Parish withdrew in April following complaints that he had been watching porn on his mobile phone in Parliament. The Wakefield by-election was called after MP Imran Ahmad Khan withdrew after being convicted of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy.

The Tories had already lost a by-election in December in the constituency of North Shropshire, which is considered a Conservative stronghold.

The elections were seen as a mood test for Johnson, who is under a lot of pressure because of the affair about parties at the seat of government during the corona lockdown. The Prime Minister had already declared on election day that he would not resign in the event of defeat. (afp/dl)

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