RISHI SUNAK TOPS SECOND ROUND OF VOTING IN UK LEADERSHIP CONTEST

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London: Indian-origin former UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak won the most votes in the second round of voting to succeed Boris Johnson as leader of the Conservative Party and Prime Minister, as one candidate was eliminated.

Sunak came top with 101 votes, followed by Trade Minister Penny Mordaunt on 83 votes and Foreign Secretary Liz Truss on 64 votes.

“Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak (101 votes), Minister of State for Trade Policy Penny Mordaunt (83), Foreign Secretary Liz Truss (64), former Minister of State for Equalities Kemi Badenoch (49), and Chair of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee Tom Tugendhat (32) advanced to the next round of voting,” Sputnik News Agency reported.

However, Attorney General Suella Braverman was eliminated with 27 votes.

Rishi Sunak, former Chancellor of the Exchequer had topped the first round with 88 votes, according to Graham Brady, chair of the Conservative Backbench 1922 Committee.

According to the Russian news agency said that this time, in order to pass to the next round, a minimum of supporters was not established, and the candidate with the smallest number of votes dropped out of the race.

Notably, the 1922 Committee aims to whittle down the field to two candidates in successive rounds of voting before the British parliamentarians break up for the summer recess on July 21.

The final two contenders will then go through a postal ballot of all the Conservative members, numbering around 200,000, over the summer and the winner will be announced on September 5, becoming the new Tory leader and the UK’s next Prime Minister.

Boris Johnson replaced Theresa May as Prime Minister in 2019 and announced on July 7 that he was stepping down as Prime Minister and leader of the UK Conservative Party.

A total of 58 ministers quit the government following an ethics scandal which ultimately forced the UK Premier to resign. Johnson, 58, managed to remain in power for almost three years, despite allegations that he was too close to party donors, that he protected supporters from bullying and corruption allegations, and that he misled Parliament and was dishonest to the public about government office parties that broke pandemic lockdown rules.

Johnson would continue to remain in office until October as caretaker prime minister until a new Tory leader is elected.

Johnson, who won a landslide victory in the general election in 2019, lost support after he was caught in a string of scandals, including the ‘Party Gate’ scandal and Pincher scandal involving his appointment of a politician accused of sexual misconduct.

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