Former UK prime minister Boris Johnson is facing the Privileges Committee today, Wednesday March 2. Mr Johnson will be before the committee to give evidence on whether he misled parliament about Covid-19 rule-breaking parties.
Mr. Johnson, who is still a MP, has accepted the committee’s invitation to attend. The session will see the committee’s members, composed of four Conservative MPs, two Labour MPs and one SNP MP , question Mr Johnson on a range of matters arising from evidence submitted to the inquiry.
A meeting will take place between MPs and Mr Johnson at around 1.30pm. The session will get underway afterwards and it is here where he will have the chance to convince the committee that he did not mis-lead parliament.
Partygate rocked the UK in the months following the Covid-19 pandemic. Reports were made over parties and gatherings which were said to have taken place during a time when social gatherings were prohibited in an effort to curb the spread of the virus.
One of these events was Mr Johnson’s 56th birthday party, a cheese and wine gathering in the Downing Street garden and a ‘bring your own booze’ party. Mr Johnson’s birthday party saw Downing Street staff gather in the Cabinet Room in what was reportedly a surprise event for the then prime minister organised by his wife, Carrie Johnson.
Mr Johnson initially denied any wrongdoing, but Downing Street later apologised to the Queen after details emerged of staff partying into the early hours before Prince Philip’s funeral in April 2021. A spokesperson for the PM said it was "deeply regrettable that this took place at a time of national mourning".
Following the news of the parties and gatherings, former civil servant Sue Gray led an investigation into the actions of Downing Street. The report identified that there had been “failures of leadership and judgement" under Mr Johnson’s leadership.
How to watch the Privileges Committee live on TV
You can follow proceedings as they happen on National World’s live stream. The session will get underway at around 2pm. It is expected to continue until around 6pm. BBC Parliament will also be showing the proceedings.