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Rishi Sunak backs UK PM Johnson in confidence vote

UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak, one of the senior-most Cabinet ministers seen as a contender for the top job, called on the Conservative Party to move on to more pressing matters after Prime Minister Boris Johnson survived a vote of no-confidence in his leadership with a narrow margin.

“The PM has won the confidence vote and now it’s time to move forward. Tomorrow we get back to work growing the economy and delivering better public services," the British Indian minister said after the vote on the evening of June 6.

The finance minister had strongly backed his boss as it was announced that Johnson will face a vote of confidence over the partygate scandal.

“From the vaccine rollout to our response to Russian aggression, the PM has shown the strong leadership our country needs. I am backing him today and will continue to back him as we focus on growing the economy, tackling the cost of living and clearing the Covid backlogs,” he had tweeted earlier.

At the Tory party internal vote, 211 members of Parliament voted in favour of Johnson staying on as their leader, which the UK PM insisted was decisively in his favour. But as many as 148 Tory members of Parliament voted against him, with his critics branding it a damaging outcome for the PM's political future.

Johnson said: "I think this is a very good result for politics and for the country... I think it's a convincing result, a decisive result and what it means is that as a government we can move on and focus on the stuff that I think really matters to people. I've got a far bigger mandate from my own parliamentary colleagues for instance than I had in 2019.”

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