Boris Johnson has been accused of leading a “zombie government” which is too busy dealing with the “partygate” row to focus on running the country.
Labour pointed to a lack of progress on a number of bills as well as the government’s failure to deal with a raft of problems as proof that the PM has become paralysed while he waits for Sue Gray’s report into alleged lockdown parties in Downing Street and Whitehall to report back.
They said the online harms bill, which was due before Christmas, had still not been published, while the animal welfare bill is also delayed.
A new bill boosting employment rights, promised in the 2019 Queen’s Speech, had still not appeared, Labour said, while the levelling up white paper has also been repeatedly delayed.
A failure to act on surging energy bills or the dumping of sewage in rivers and lakes was further proof of a government in disarray, they said.
The House of Commons has also risen early on a number of occasions because MPs have had no business to deal with, most recently on Wednesday when it adjourned at 4.40pm.
Deputy Labour leader Angela Rayner said: “Boris Johnson and the Conservatives are failing Britain.
“This zombie government is so mired in scandal and police investigations that it cannot address the urgent issues facing our country.
“From the cost of living crisis hitting people’s pockets to the emergency in our NHS – the prime minister’s inability to govern has created gridlock in our political system.
“We are still waiting for new employment laws, legislation to protect from online harms, and a plan to address rocketing energy bills – which Labour will fix by cutting VAT and insulating our homes.
“The Tories are so compromised by the prime minister’s scandal they can’t govern at all. He needs to resign and make way for a Labour government that will offer security, prosperity and respect to the British people.”
The prime minister’s official spokesman rejected the accusation that government had ground to a halt while it waits for the Gray report and any subsequent fallout.
He said: “This is a government that is getting on with the job and is focused on the public’s priorities.”
Asked about the regular meetings Johnson is having with Conservative MPs in a bid to shore up support within the party, the spokesman said: “You would expect any prime minister to engage with his MPs and answer their questions.
“You can see from what the prime minister has done this week that it is not detracting from the work of government, both internationally in Ukraine or domestically.”
Source: Huff Post