Members of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s ruling Conservative Party expect his leadership to be challenged this week. A confidence vote is expected to be held on Wednesday, the British newspaper Sunday Times reported.
A growing number of Conservative MPs say they have lost confidence in the Johnson government as a result of the scandal surrounding government employees’ parties during the lockdowns, known as the partygate. Some say they have filed letters to officially call for a vote of no confidence against Johnson.
To reach a vote, at least 54 Conservative MPs must formally request a confidence vote from the chairman of the party’s so-called 1922 committee. The letters are confidential so that only the chairman of the committee knows how many have been submitted.
More than 25 of Johnson’s party members in the House of Commons have so far made their suspicions public. According to The Times, party officials and rebel parliamentarians believe they are on the brink of reaching the 54-letter threshold.
The Conservatives will defend two parliamentary seats in by-elections later this month after incumbent MPs were forced to resign. One had to leave for viewing pornography in parliament and the other after being convicted of sexually abusing a boy.
A poll commissioned by the newspaper shows the opposition Labor party 20 points ahead of the Conservatives in one of these constituencies. In the other district, the Liberal Democrats have a chance to take over the seat of the Conservatives. Any defeats do not endanger the majority of Johnson’s party in the House of Commons.