Wednesday 11 December 2019

The fall-out continues: Jeremy Corbyn loses another six members of shadow cabinet today

Jeremy Corbyn
Jeremy Corbyn

David Hughes and Shaun Connolly

Jeremy Corbyn faced calls to step aside and let his deputy Tom Watson take over as caretaker Labour leader as another four members of his shadow cabinet resigned.

Lisa Nandy quit as shadow energy secretary and Owen Smith resigned from the work and pensions brief as the revolt against Mr Corbyn continued.

The pair told Mr Corbyn that a leadership contest was "inevitable" and called for Mr Watson to take temporary charge of the party.

Meanwhile, John Healey has resigned as shadow housing minister and Angela Eagle has resigned as shadow business secretary saying that the Labour Party needs a "leader who can unite rather than divide".

Maria Eagle has since resigned as shadow culture secretary.

And, this afternoon, Luciana Berger has resigned as shadow mental health minister saying that we "need a Labour leader who can unite our party".

File photos of members of Jeremy Corbyn's shadow cabinet who have today resigned. PA Wire
File photos of members of Jeremy Corbyn's shadow cabinet who have today resigned. PA Wire

Mr Corbyn has vowed to fight any challenge to his position and Ms Nandy is rumoured to be considering a bid for the leadership herself.

In a joint statement, Ms Nandy and Mr Smith said: "The lack of confidence in the leadership goes beyond the small group of MPs who have consistently opposed Jeremy since his election.

"It has become clear that he is unable to form a broad, inclusive shadow cabinet that draws on the best of our movement's left and right traditions.

"For that reason we have told Jeremy that whilst the party holds a leadership contest - which is now inevitable - we believe Tom Watson ought to take over as a caretaker leader to stabilise the party and to enable us to play a full part as the official opposition in one of the most difficult periods this country has ever faced."

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn
Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn

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