Tuesday, 16 October, 2018

United Kingdom minister: Damian Green was sacked because he lied

Arlene Foster with Deputy Prime Minister Damian Green and DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds at the party conference Arlene Foster with Deputy Prime Minister Damian Green and DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds at the party conference
Judith Alexander | 24 December, 2017, 03:26

The PM may decide not to appoint a new First Secretary of State, Downing Street said, but a replacement for Mr Green's other role, as Cabinet Office minster, would be announced in the New Year.

In his resignation letter, Mr Green reiterated he had not downloaded or viewed pornography on his parliamentary compute but said he should "have been clear in my press statements that police lawyers talked to my lawyers in 2008 about the pornography on the computers, and that the police raised it with me in a subsequent phone call in 2013". "Clearly he did something that was a breach of the ministerial code and that's why Theresa May took the decision that she did".

The Cabinet investigation did not yield a conclusion about sexual misconduct allegations writer Kate Maltby made against Green. The Prime Minister said she expected a proper investigation into claims that information was leaked by a former senior officer.

British Prime Minister Theresa May's de facto deputy resigned Wednesday night, after he admitted to misleading the public with two statements regarding allegations that he kept pornography on his work computer in 2008.

She wrote in an article for The Times in November that Green touched her knee "fleetingly" in a London pub in 2015, when the two were meeting to discuss the possibility of a future career for her in politics.

"It is therefore with deep regret, and enduring gratitude for the contribution you have made over many years, that I asked you to resign from the government and have accepted your resignation", she said.

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Green is one of May's oldest friends and one of her few close political confidants.

"I apologise that my statements were misleading on this point", he said.

The letter also said Mr Green, 61, "recognised" he made a female journalist "feel uncomfortable".

Ms Maltby is not commenting on Mr Green's resignation until she receives more details from the Cabinet Office.

Green's sacking follows the November resignations of Sir Michael Fallon as defence secretary amid Westminster sleaze allegations, and global development secretary Priti Patel over undisclosed meetings in Israel.

"We have received many supportive messages from people near and far who appreciate Kate's courage and the importance of speaking out about the abuse of authority".

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