Sir Philip Rutnam the Home Office permanent secretary has quit, saying he has been the target of a “vicious campaign against him” in Priti Patel’s office.
Rutnam has said he will take the government to court as he made serious allegations that the Home Secretary had been “shouting and screaming” at personnel and levelled bullying claims at Priti Patel.
In a statement given to BBC News, Sir Philip said, “In the last 10 days, I have been the target of a vicious and orchestrated briefing campaign.”
Priti Patel denies any “involvement” and she vehemently rejects the claims of bullying.
He added, “I regret I do not believe her. She has not made the efforts I would expect to dissociate herself from the comments.”
Sir Philip said, “Even despite this campaign I was willing to effect a reconciliation with the Home Secretary.
“But despite my efforts to engage with her, Priti Patel has made no effort to engage with me to discuss this.
“I believe these events give me very strong grounds to claim constructive, unfair dismissal and I will be pursuing that claim in the courts.”
The General Secretary of the FDA union Dave Penman said on Twitter, “Sir Philip had a choice to resign and go quietly with financial compensation, instead he has chosen to speak out against the attacks on public servants.
“I know many thousands of his colleagues will recognise the courage & integrity he is showing in doing so.”