Dominic Cummings marches out of No10 ‘for good’ with things in a cardboard box

Dominic Cummings tonight ostentatiously marched out of Downing Street with things in a cardboard box as sources claimed he had left “for good”.

The Prime Minister’s top advisor chose to walk out in front of the world’s media instead of using one of the many side entrances to No10 in what appeared to be a bizarre stunt.

In comes after Mr Cummings’ top ally, Director of Communications Lee Cain, announced he would quit in a factional warfare that has gripped No10 just as the UK hit 50,000 coronavirus deaths.

Sources told multiple media outlets Mr Cummings had decided to leave with immediate effect, and would not be returning to Downing Street.

He and Mr Cain spoke with the PM at lunchtime and it was decided they should go immediately rather than have drawn-out departures, sources said.

Despite a barrage of questions from journalists, No10 has never actually formally confirmed the top aide has or will quit. Instead he gave a convoluted signal to the BBC last night that he would be out by the end of the year.

The Prime Minister’s top advisor chose to walk out in front of the world’s media

No10 staffers were left baffled as an internal warfare gripped No10. One insider said: “This could all be an elaborate plot to make journalists look foolish.”

But a source told the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg Mr Cummings was now gone “for good”.

Another source told the Financial Times: “That’s the last time he walks down the road like Kim Kardashian, preening for the cameras like the spoilt lord of Barnard Castle.”

The pound rose against the dollar and the euro after it emerged Mr Cummings would leave.

It comes after relations in No10 broke down in an astonishing internal warfare that will dramatically reshape the top of government.

Sources told multiple media outlets Mr Cummings had decided to leave with immediate effect

Mr Cummings and Mr Cain worked together on the Vote Leave campaign with Boris Johnson and were notorious for their bruising management styles.

But after more than a year of tight control, their grasp on the Prime Minister slipped when they attempted to boost their faction’s power base in No10.

A source briefed The Times that Mr Cain would be given a new job of Chief of Staff – giving him vast powers to issue orders in the name of the Prime Minister.

But the plot fell apart after the PM’s fiancee Carrie Symonds objected to Mr Cain – who a decade ago dressed in the Mirror Chicken suit to chase Tory politicians – getting the job.

She is said to be more allied to Allegra Stratton, the former Newsnight journalist who the PM hired as his new TV spokeswoman – sidelining Mr Cain.

Now the Telegraph has tipped ex-Chancellor Sajid Javid for the Chief of Staff job in what would be another blow to Cummings’ faction in No10.

Mr Javid resigned in protest at an attempted No10 power grab over his advisors.

And one of Mr Khan’s former advisors, Sonia Khan, today reached a five-figure settlement after she was sacked by Cummings and ordered out of No10.

Labour leader Keir Starmer branded the chaos “pathetic”.

He told LBC radio: “I think millions of people will be waking up this morning, scratching their heads, saying, ‘What on earth is going on?’

“We’re in the middle of a pandemic, we’re all worried about our health and our families, we’re all worried about our jobs, and this lot are squabbling behind the door of No10. It’s pathetic. Pull yourselves together, focus on the job in hand.”

Mr Cummings last night claimed he always intended to depart at the end of the year, pointing to a blog saying he should become “largely redundant”.

But all the signs are he is leaving after losing out in a power struggle among the Prime Minister’s inner circle.

Less than 24 hours ago, he claimed reports he threatened to resign on the spot were an “invention”.

The psychodrama has baffled and fascinated staff in No10.

Number 10 and Cabinet Office staff took a sharp intake of breath at 4.30pm, when an email landed in their inboxes with the subject line “staff update.”

Upon opening the email, they found it was, in fact, a reminder to nominate colleagues for the Cabinet Office internal staff awards, known as ‘The Cabbies’.

Meanwhile the much-vaunted televised press conferences – which started the row in the first place – have still not begun.

The White House-style briefings won’t start until December at the earliest as No10 staffers continue to try to soundproof the room.

Officials plan to use an old colonial courtroom in 9 Downing Street, where off-camera press briefings were moved to before the pandemic.

But with its high ceilings and wooding fixtures the acoustics are poor, with the spokesman barely audible just a few metres away.

The budget for making the room TV-friendly is not yet known.


Source: All Football

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