The British government on Friday announced Oliver Dowden as deputy prime minister, replacing Dominic Raab who resigned earlier in the day.
On Friday morning after a report into his conduct found he had acted in an “intimidating way” and was “unreasonably and persistently aggressive” in meetings, according to Reuters.
But he has attacked the findings as “flawed”, and claimed they “set a dangerous precedent for the conduct of good government”.
This means the MP for Hertsmere will have various duties, including deputising for the Prime Minister at PMQs or even filling in for them if they fall ill (Like Mr Raab did when Boris Johnson had a near-fatal battle with Covid-19).
A regular on the front bench over the last few years, Mr Dowden has held several different jobs in government.
As deputy prime minister, Dominic Raab had no formal powers but stepped in for the prime minister if he was away from parliament or incapacitated.
Oliver Dowden currently serves as cabinet office minister in Rishi Sunak’s government. He was previously chairman of Rishi Sunak’s Conservative Party but resigned from that post last June after two crushing by-election defeats for the party.
In the same announcement, lawmaker Alex Chalk was appointed new justice minister, a position which was previously held by Dominic Raab.
British Deputy Prime Minister, Dominic Raab resigns over bullying allegations
British Deputy Prime Minister, Dominic Raab has resigned after allegations that he bullied staff members while working as a cabinet minister across different departments.
In a letter posted on Twitter, the deputy prime minister and justice secretary disclosed a report into his behaviour sustained two claims against him, Sky News reported.
However, Raab took issue with the findings, describing them “flawed” and claiming they “set a dangerous precedent for the conduct of good government”.
A Labour source told Sky News it was the second time a cabinet minister had been “allowed to resign” over bullying allegations, pointing to Sir Gavin Williamson stepping down last year, instead of the PM firing them.
“We’ve had 13 years of Tory PMs trying to dodge the rules and defend their mates,” they added. “Enough is enough.”
Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats called for Raab to resign as an MP and for a by-election to be held in his seat, saying he had shown “he is not only unfit to serve as a minister, but is totally unfit to represent his constituents in parliament”.
In the letter addressed to the prime minister, Raab wrote: “I called for the inquiry and undertook to resign if it made any finding of bullying whatsoever. I believe it is important to keep my word.”
The outgoing minister said the report – carried out by independent investigator Adam Tolley KC – had “not once, in four and a half years, sworn or shouted at anyone, let alone thrown anything or otherwise physically intimidated anyone, nor intentionally sought to belittle anyone”.
But he also attacked the findings, saying the inquiry had set “the threshold for bullying so low” that it had “set a dangerous precedent”.
“It will encourage spurious complaints against ministers, and have a chilling effect on those driving change on behalf of your government – and ultimately the British people,” said Raab