Boris Johnson apologised to MPs after a video emerged showing Downing Street staff joking about a lockdown Christmas party at the prime minister’s state address.
The footage obtained by ITV shows the prime ministers then press chief Allegra Stratton joking about the party with other staffers during a press conference rehearsal last December.
The prime minister said he shared the public’s anger and ordered an inquiry into whether any lockdown rules had been broken at the property.
However, opposition leader Sir Keir Starmer said that the PM was taking people for fools and that he should just admit that he was aware of what had happened at the property.
Last December on the 16th, the Greater London Region entered into the highest Covid lockdown level which prevented many from meeting with family members as well as explicitly restricted work Christmas parties.
However, earlier this month, government insiders leaked information about a No 10 party that took place on the 18th of December with the mocking staffer video later filmed on the 22nd.
On the 8th of December during Prime Ministers Question time at the House of Commons many Members of Parliament lined up to criticise Mr Johnson with Labour MP Rosena Allin-Khan asking how the Prime Minister slept at night.
Replying to Rosena Allin Khan, who also works as a doctor in a London hospital, Mr Johnson said that he took “responsibility for everything the government has done”.
During his apology, the Prime Minister suggested he had been misled about the Christmas party last year and said that he had been “repeatedly assured that there was no party and that no Covid restrictions were broken”.
Downing Street representatives have spent much of the past week denying that a party had taken place at all, however multiple inside sources have claimed that dozens of No 10 employees were in attendance.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said “the situation is as clear as day” in reference to the alleged party at Downing Street.
He continued by saying “surely the prime minister isn’t going to pretend” that the first he had heard about the party was the previous night.
“Why doesn’t he end the investigation right now by just admitting it?” Sir Starmer finished.
Prime Minister Johnson said he had spoken with the cabinet secretary, the most senior civil servant in Downing Street, to establish all the facts around the event and report back as soon as possible.
The Prime Minister ended his speech on the matter by saying that if evidence from the cabinet secretary’s investigation showed that covid rules had been broken, it would mean disciplinary punishment for those involved.
The video comes amid growing anger at the government’s actions as further leaks claim that No 10 also held a separate Christmas quiz at the property which several individuals apparently attended.