British Deputy Prime Minister Raab resigns over accusations of moral harassment

British Deputy Prime Minister Raab resigns over accusations of moral harassment

British Deputy Prime Minister Raab resigns, accused of moral harassment

British Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab announced his resignation Friday after an independent report found he had morally harassed civil servants, a setback for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, of whom he was a close ally.

“I am writing to resign from your government,” Raab, who was also justice minister, wrote in a letter addressed to Sunak and posted on Twitter.

“I requested this investigation and pledged to resign if it established facts of harassment, whatever they were. I think it is important to respect my word,” he added.

The investigation was launched after eight complaints about his behavior when he was foreign minister and Brexit minister, as well as during an earlier stint at the justice ministry.

Raab has always denied these allegations, which have drawn widespread criticism from the opposition.

The report, which was delivered on Thursday to the prime minister and has not yet been made public, “rejected all but two of the complaints,” the minister assured in his letter, insisting that he still considers them “false.”

“By setting such a low threshold for harassment, the inquiry sets a dangerous precedent” for the government’s work, he lashed out.

“Ministers should be able to criticize directly” the work of senior civil servants, he added, admitting that “of course this must be done within reasonable limits.”

The Guardian reported in November that Raab’s appointment as justice minister had caused concern among many civil servants, with some considering resigning.

According to this British newspaper, ministry staff had described a “culture of fear” in a department led by a “tyrant,” “rude” and “aggressive.”

The Sun tabloid reported that Raab had thrown tomatoes in a fit of anger during a meeting, which his spokesman denied at the time.

He is the third minister to leave Sunak’s executive in the wake of various allegations and further overshadows the Conservative prime minister’s pledge to show “integrity, professionalism and accountability” after the succession of scandals that marked Boris Johnson’s tenure.

In November, Gavin Williamson, a minister without portfolio, resigned over harassment allegations. And in January, Sunak had to sack Conservative Party chairman Nadhim Zahawi, who was part of the government, over tax issues.

The new scandal comes at a bad time for the party, two weeks before local elections that are expected to be difficult for the Conservatives who have been in power for 13 years.

Melissa Galbraith
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.For tips or news submission: