A government Minister has resigned on Monday morning over continued anger at the Prime Minister’s chief advisor, Dominic Cummings.
Douglas Ross, a junior minister in the Scotland office said he has “trouble” over Cummings’s alleged breach of the lockdown rules enforced on 23 March.
Ross said Boris Johnson’s senior advisor’s explanation of why he travelled to Durham during the coronavirus lockdown was based on decisions “others felt were not available to them.”
Ross who was the Under Secretary of State for Scotland said that he cannot “in good faith” tell his constituents who were unable to see their loved ones, say goodbye to those who died or care for sick relatives who obeyed the rules, whilst Cummings did the opposite.
Ross said that “while the intentions may have been well-meaning,” Cummings’ own interpretation of the rules as a chief advisor to the government is “not shared by the vast majority of people.”
In a letter posted on his Twitter account, the Tory MP wrote, “I have just tendered my resignation from the UK Government and my position as Under Secretary of State for Scotland. Following my re-election as MP for Moray last December, I was honoured to be asked by the Prime Minister to join his Government and take on this role in the Scotland Office.
“It is a position I have relished and one I’ve committed to wholeheartedly since my appointment. There was much I still hoped to do in this role but events over the last few days mean I can no longer serve as a member of this Government.
“I have never met Dominic Cummings so my judgment on this matter has always been open and I accept his statement on Monday afternoon clarified the actions he took in what he felt were the best interests of his family. However, these were decisions many others felt were not available to them.
“As a father myself, my instinct is to always do what is best for my son and wife. We have been fortunate not to have caught this awful virus but, if we did, we are prepared to follow the government advice and stay at home to contain this virus.
“While the intentions may have been well-meaning, the reaction to this news shows that Mr Cummings’ interpretation of the government advice was not shared by the vast majority of people who have done as the Government asked”I have constituents who didn’t get to say goodbye to loved ones; families who could not mourn together; people who didn’t visit sick relatives because they followed the guidance of the Government.
“I cannot in good faith tell them they were all wrong and one senior adviser to the Government was right.
“This is not a decision I have reached quickly. I have waited to hear all of the information and thought long and hard over this.
“I realise both the immediate and long-term implications of my decision to resign from Government.
“While it has been a great privilege to serve as a minister, my first duty is to be a representative and I feel I can best represent my Moray constituents and many across the country who have expressed their feelings about this by resigning as a minister.
“I look forward to continuing to stand up for the people of Moray from the back benches.”