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MP changes view and says Dominic Cummings should resign after flood of angry emails

PUBLISHED: 10:33 25 May 2020 | UPDATED: 11:45 25 May 2020

Waveney MP Peter Aldous.
 Picture: Archant library.

Waveney MP Peter Aldous. Picture: Archant library.

Archant Norfolk © 2014

Waveney MP Peter Aldous is calling for the prime minister’s chief aide to resign after his controversial lockdown travel as he admits receiving hundreds of emails from frustrated constituents.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson's senior aide Dominic Cummings arriving at his north London home, as lockdown questions continue to bombard the Government after it emerged that he travelled to his parents' home despite coronavirus-related restrictions. Photo: Victoria Jones/PA WirePrime Minister Boris Johnson's senior aide Dominic Cummings arriving at his north London home, as lockdown questions continue to bombard the Government after it emerged that he travelled to his parents' home despite coronavirus-related restrictions. Photo: Victoria Jones/PA Wire

Mr Aldous yesterday came out in support for Dominic Cummings after suggesting that “the welfare of Mr Cummings’ child was of understandable importance”.

He said: “From my understanding he was self isolating, and he and his wife drove up to stay. They did not come into contact with anyone and he needed to be near his family for the welfare of his child”.

But today Mr Aldous said that he has “changed his perspective” following a strong public response - including emails from constituents he says have never contacted him before.

He said: “I was originally sympathetic to Mr Cummings.

Dominic Cummings. Picture: PA Video/PA WireDominic Cummings. Picture: PA Video/PA Wire

“But questions have been raised about whether the family were completely self-isolating in County Durham and whether they took a family trip to Barnard Castle, 30 miles away from where he was staying.

“These new developments have made me reconsider.”

Mr Aldous said that he had been inundated with emails from constituents over the course of the weekend, and particularly since Boris Johnson made his speech last night.

He said: “My constituents are expressing anger at the sacrifice that many families have made, and the fact that there seems to be one rule for the electorate and another rule for the people in charge.

“I think there should not be any distractions at this stage which might jeopardise the lockdown, especially in light of the need to stop a second wave of the virus.

“Therefore, after taking guidance from my constituents, I have come to the conclusion that Mr Cummings should indeed step down.

“Constituents who have never emailed me in their life are now getting in touch to give their view on this, and that view is clear - Mr Cummings should not remain in his position.”

Mr Aldous said he can understand Mr Johnson and Mr Cummings have “been together an awful lot”, and “achieved a great deal in both the Brexit campaign and Conservative victory last December”.

He added: “I can fully understand why the Prime Minister wished to support Mr Cummings, but the feedback from my constituents is that he must go.”

The news comes as the Prime Minister claimed Mr Cummings acted “legally, reasonably and with integrity”, but refused to address detailed allegations.

• This paper has contacted all MPs in Norfolk and Waveney for a response to Mr Cummings’ actions. Those yet to respond are Brandon Lewis, Chloe Smith, James Wild, Jerome Mayhew, Duncan Baker, Elizabeth Truss and Richard Bacon.


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