Boris Johnson branded ‘cancer that needs to be removed from politics’ as public gives verdict on flailing PM

The Independent spoke to voters as the Prime Minister fought for his political life at PMQs, with additional reporting from Charlotte Langrish

Boris Johnson asked in which circumstances he will resign

Boris Johnson has been branded ‘a cancer that needs to be removed from politics’ as members of the public delivered their withering verdict on the flailing Prime Minister.

Following the resignations of Rishi Sunak, Sajid Javid and more than a dozen other Conversative MPs, calls for Mr Johnson to step down continue to grow.

The now-former Health Secretary Mr Javid resigned first on Tuesday evening, by saying he couldn’t stay in his position “in good confidence” following “the tone” Mr Johnson had set in recent months.

The Chancellor followed just ten minutes later, adding that he believes the country needs to be run “properly, competently and seriously.”

The Independent spoke to members of the public who shared their reactions to the resignations and thoughts on whether Mr Johnson should remain as Prime Minister.

Boris Johnson’s premiership continues to hang by a thread

Sylvia Zamperini, 54, a mechanical engineer, said: “I think Boris Johnson will have to be dragged out kicking and screaming. We can see people are turning on him because they are fed up of defending something that cannot be defended.”

“The longer he stays in power, the more damage he can do to the Tory party.”

Ralph Ojun, 34, a music engineer, believes it’s now time for a Labour leadership.

He said: “The Tories have been in for ages now and we can’t see any improvement so let’s try something new.

“I don’t trust him, or many politicians because they will say something today, but tomorrow will be another thing. So, let Boris resign.”

Sylvia Zamperini said Johnson would need to be dragged out of his role

Actor Gareth Kearns, 51, said he was pleased at Mr Sunak and Mr Javid’s announcements.

“I was beginning to wonder what is required for them to start kicking up a fuss about things,” he said.

“Now its started, we need to lose this person who is a cancer at the heart of our body politic,” he added.

“There is a problem with the entire Tory party but he [Johnson] is just there to enjoy power, not even exercise power, just to enjoy sitting in the chair.

“At some point, someone has to actually be the adult in the room and it’s never going to be him, which I think the other Tories are finally realising too. He could literally kill the Tory party.”

Gareth Kearns said Johnson doesn’t exercise power but rather enjoys it

”There will be a second vote of no confidence,” Mr Kearns continued. “He will be out, I can’t see how he can possibly be there for another 10 days. I say, 10 days tops.”

Neil Colston, 70, was shocked to hear of Mr Sunak’s resignation. He said: “I’m not surprised about the Health Secretary but Rishi going is a big problem.

“Up until very recently, I’ve supported Boris Johnson because I think he did a great job during the pandemic and was still doing a good job,” he continued. “But now, I think he should go. My problem is that I wanted Rishi to do the job next because he seems to be the sensible person.”

On what made him change his mind, Mr Colston said: “Today… I wasn’t too bothered about Partygate, but this is just a step too far and I think he is being badly advised.”

Not everyone believes Mr Johnson’s time is up, however.

Bryan Baker, a social media influencer, said he was initially surprised at the resignation announcements and debated Mr Sunak and Mr Javid’s intentions.

He said: “Did they actually resign for the people’s benefit or their own? I think the latter.”

He added that Mr Johnson will and should stay in his role as Prime Minister.

Bryan Baker said Mr Johnson should remain as he has performed well as PM

He said: “The reason I think Boris will continue to be Prime Minister is because of his performance during Covid, Brexit and the war in Ukraine.

“With anything else, I’m not going to give him support because he has done bad,” Mr Baker added, “but are we all perfect? Absolutely not.

“So, for what he’s done while going through a period none of us could have expected, I’ll give him credit because forget about the sleaze, we are human beings and make mistakes. But, he has performed well and that is what counts.”

Additional reporting from Charlotte Langrish

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