Truss becomes third female UK Prime Minister
Atiku congratulates new PM, seeks improved Nigeria, UK partnership
Foreign Secretary, Liz Truss, has been named leader of the governing Conservative Party, taking power as Britain’s next Prime Minister (PM).
Truss, the third female to serve in this capacity, will become PM today after travelling to meet the Queen at Balmoral in Scotland. Yesterday’s announcement triggered the beginning of a handover from Boris Johnson and his departure from No. 10 Dowing Street.
Johnson was forced to announce his resignation in July after months of scandal and he will travel to Scotland to meet Queen Elizabeth today to officially tender his resignation.
Lawmakers, through a body called the 1922 Committee, set the terms of the contest to replace him. The broad outlines of the two-stage process remained constant. First, Conservative lawmakers hold a series of ballots among themselves to whittle the number of contenders down to two.
Then there’s a ballot on the final choice among the party’s entire dues-paying membership. These are members of the public who pay a standard annual subscription of £25 (about $30) and there are about 160,000 of them.
Eleven lawmakers sought to run this time, with the final two, Mr. Rishi Sunak and Truss emerging on July 20 after five rounds of voting.
In a short victory speech after the announcement, Truss said it was an honour to be elected after undergoing “one of the longest job interviews in history.”
She thanked Sunak for a “hard-fought campaign and pledged to deliver a bold plan.”
Truss got 57 per cent of eligible votes among Conservative Party members, while Sunak, former Chancellor of the exchequer, got 42 per cent. His numbers didn’t tally with what the opinion polls had earlier suggested.
She would be coming into office at a time when the country faces a cost-of-living crisis, industrial unrest and a recession.
Truss, aged 47, has promised to act quickly to tackle Britain’s cost-of-living crisis, cut taxes, grow the economy, saying that within a week she will come up with a plan to tackle rising energy bills and secure future fuel supplies.
FORMER Vice President and presidential candidate of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has congratulated the new PM, saying that UK has once again proven the resilient power of democracy. He described Truss’ election as leader of the Conservative Party in the UK as a ‘hard-fought process.’
Atiku, who took to his verified Twitter handle yesterday to celebrate the new PM, said he equally looks forward to an enhanced partnership of the new leadership of the Conservatives Party with Nigeria and other African countries in the areas of human capital development, trade and strengthening democracy and the integrity of elections.
He wrote: “The United Kingdom has proven, yet again, the resilient power of democracy. The election of MP @trussliz as leader of the Conservative Party was a hard-fought process, but the ultimate winners are the people of the United Kingdom. I join all other friends of the UK to celebrate this moment.
“I equally look forward to an enhanced partnership of the new with Nigeria and African countries in the areas of human capital development, trade and strengthening democracy and the integrity of elections. -AA.”