LONDON, August 27 (Reuters) – British MP Nadine Dorries has slammed her Conservative Party leader Rishi Sunak in her formal letter of resignation, accusing the Prime Minister of running a “zombie parliament” and lacking any political vision.
Dorries, a close ally of former Prime Minister Boris Johnson, announced her resignation in June and then faced mounting criticism for not actually doing so, preventing her successor election from being held along with three other local elections last month .
Dorries officially resigned late Saturday with a lengthy resignation letter that shook Sunak. The by-election to replace her is expected to be held in the autumn and will be another test of popularity for the Conservatives, trailing the opposition Labor Party in opinion polls.
“Since you took office a year ago, the country has been ruled by a zombie parliament in which nothing significant has happened. What exactly has been done or achieved?” said Dorries.
“You hold the office of Prime Minister unelected, without a single vote, not even from your own MPs. They have no mandate from the people and the government is at a loss. You wasted the goodwill of the nation on what?”
A spokesman for Sunak declined to comment.
Sunak, a former finance minister and investment banker, became prime minister in October last year after being the only candidate nominated in a party leadership contest. What followed was a series of scandals that forced Johnson to resign as prime minister and economic turmoil that prompted his successor, Liz Truss, to resign after just six weeks.
Sunak has sought to use his technocratic leadership to restore his party’s credibility. But amid high inflation, economic stagnation, industrial unrest and long waits for national health services, his Conservatives are far behind Labor in polls ahead of next year’s expected general election.
By-election votes are considered one of the few remaining ways to gauge public support ahead of this election. In July, Sunak’s Conservatives lost two strategic seats in Parliament but unexpectedly retained Johnson’s old constituency – a setback for Labour.
“In your impatience to become prime minister, you are putting your personal ambition above the stability of the country and our economy,” Dorries said.
“Bewildered, we search in vain for the grand political vision for the people of this great country to hold onto that would make all this disruption and resulting inertia worthwhile, and we find absolutely nothing.”
Reporting by Kylie MacLellan, edited by Frances Kerry
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