Politics

Crying MP hits out at No 10 parties: ‘My mother-in-law died alone’

Jim Shannon MP could not contain his heartache in the Commons (Picture: PA)

This is the heartbreaking moment MP Jim Shannon broke down in tears as he questioned a Tory minister on parties at Downing Street.

The Northern Irish politician was overcome with emotion after revealing his mother-in-law died alone during the pandemic.

He told the Commons: ‘In Northern Ireland we reached the milestone of 3,000 deaths due to Covid just last week.

‘Including my mother-in-law, who died alone.’

He struggled to finish his question as his voice cracked with heartache, before apologising to the Speaker.

Paymaster General Michael Ellis faced angry MPs in place of Boris Johnson and told Mr Shannon he was ‘sorry for his loss’.

The Prime Minister chose not to answer an urgent question about the alleged party during the first lockdown.

MPs in the chamber could be heard asking ‘where is he?’ as Mr Ellis stepped up.

Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner demanded an explanation over the alleged rule-breaking party in May 2020, saying Mr Johnson’s absence ‘speaks volumes’.

She added: ‘It is incredibly disappointing, but not unsurprising, that the Prime Minister of whom I asked this question is not here today despite not having any official engagements.

‘I think his absence speaks volumes as does his smirks on the media, the public have already drawn their own conclusions. He can run but he can’t hide.’

Boris Johnson sent out a Tory minister to answer for the alleged party in Downing Street (Picture: PA)

The PM has so far refused to say whether he attended a ‘bring your own booze’ party in Number 10’s garden, to which 100 employees were invited, according to a leaked email.

It is thought 40 people attended in the end – including Boris and Carrie Johnson – at a time when Brits were only allowed to socialise with one other person outdoors.

Rayner asked: ‘If the Prime Minister was there, surely he knew? The invitation was sent to 100 staff, many of them his own most personal senior appointees.

‘This was organised in advance, so did the Prime Minister know about the event beforehand and did he give his permission for it go ahead?

‘And if so, did he believe this event was (in) keeping with the restrictions at the time and the guidelines, and was the chief medial officer consulted before it went ahead?’

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