Downing Street has played down the prospect of the Prime Minister carrying out a Cabinet reshuffle on the same day that his former aide Dominic Cummings gives evidence to MPs.
A senior minister reportedly told the BBC that Boris Johnson was planning a shake-up of his top team on Wednesday to distract from the appearance of his former chief advisor Mr Cummings in front of a committee of MPs.
Mr Cummings has been critical of the Government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, and on Wednesday said he had “a crucial historical document” which would expose decision making surrounding the first coronavirus lockdown that he would hand over to the Commons Health and Social Care Committee and Science and Technology Committee to which he will give evidence next week.
Cummings staged a bizarre poll on Twitter, asking the social media audience whether he should auction the document for a charity in aid of coronavirus victims or hand it over to a House of Commons committee or publish it on his blog.
“I’ve got the only copy of a crucial historical document from covid decision-making,” he said in a tweet clearly intended to make mischief, which has since been deleted.
He went on to ask: “Should I 1/ give it to the Cmte next week / put on blog, b/ auction it … & give the ETH to a covid families charity?”
Number 10 play down (tho do not completely rule out) suggests of a reshuffle next Wednesday …— Sam Coates Sky (@SamCoatesSky) May 21, 2021
… which happens to be the day of Dominic Cummings evidence session
However, No 10 played down the suggestion of a reshuffle and the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “It’s not something that we would comment on.
“We don’t comment on such matters.”
Mr Cummings, who left Downing Street in November after a behind-the-scenes power struggle, has called for a public inquiry into the handling of the pandemic.
He said the Covid plan was supposed to be “world class” but turned out to be “part disaster, part non-existent”.