Public will be told if Boris Johnson is fined by police over partygate, No10 says

Although Boris Johnson has landed in Ukraine, he has not been able to leave 'partygate' behind, as ITV News Political Correspondent Carl Dinnen reports

The public will be told if Boris Johnson is fined by police over his involvement in the partygate scandal, Number 10 has said after earlier refusing to guarantee disclosure.

There had been serious concern that the public may never learn about partygate fines after the Metropolitan Police - which is investigating 12 potentially illegal Downing Street gatherings - said it was not policy to reveal who it issues with fines.

It said it follows the College of Policing Approved Professional Practice for Media Relations which states that "identities of people dealt with by cautions, speeding fines and other fixed penalties – out-of-court disposals – should not be released or confirmed".

The force said it will only release the overall number of people fined, if any.

But, the PM's spokesman said: "Obviously we are aware of the significant public interest with regard to the Prime Minister and we would always look to provide what updates we can on him, specifically."

Asked if that meant No 10 would say if he was given a fixed penalty notice, the spokesman said: "Hypothetically, yes."

Anger among Tory MPs has ebbed and flowed over the last few days, as Carl Dinnen reports

The Met is currently reviewing more than 300 images and more than 500 pages of information, as part of its criminal investigation into potential rule-breaking on Downing Street during Covid-19 lockdowns.

Mr Johnson said he would publish “everything that we can” once the inquiries into the alleged breaking of coronavirus rules in No 10 has been finalised. Asked at a press conference in Kyiv, Ukraine, whether he would commit to publishing the full Sue Gray inquiry, including the 300 images handed included as part of the probe, the prime minister said: “Yes, of course we’ll publish everything that we can as soon as the process has been completed, as I said yesterday.”

Mr Johnson remains in power the day after being condemned in the report, which found there's been a "failure of leadership" in Number 10 under his watch.

But he's lost the support of another one of his own MPs, Peter Aldous, who said that following "a great deal of soul searching" he reached the conclusion that Mr Johnson "should resign".

He added: "It is clear that he has no intention of doing so and I have therefore written to the chairman of the 1922 Committee of Backbench Conservative MPs, advising him that I have no confidence in the Prime Minister as leader of the Conservative Party."

If 54 letters are submitted to chair Sir Graham Brady then a vote of no confidence would be triggered in the prime minister and if more than 50% of Tory MPs did not back him, he would be forced from office.

A tale of two cities: ITV News Midlands Correspondent Ben Chapman reports on the Birmingham constituencies divided by partygate

The embattled prime minister has managed to stave off a vote of no confidence for now, after a performance in the Commons which appears to have satisfied some backbenchers who were waiting to see Sue Gray's report before deciding whether to remove him.

But he remains in a precarious position, with a police investigation still hanging over him which could find him guilty of breaching Covid regulations and fine him over an event held in his Downing Street flat in November 2020.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, who told MPs there can be "no doubt" Mr Johnson is under criminal investigation, told ITV's Good Morning Britain that Mr Johnson has been left unable to govern because he's been spending so much time "trying to save his own skin".

He pointed to a scheduled call with Russian President Vladimir Putin, which had to be cancelled because Mr Johnson was defending himself in the Commons over Ms Gray's report.

The SNP's Westminster leader Ian Blackford, who was asked to leave Tuesday's Commons debate after refusing to withdraw his remark that Mr Johnson had lied to Parliament over partygate, said Mr Johnson is "not fit to be prime minister".

"One of these days the Prime Minister is going to have to accept that he has abused the trust that was put in him when he became prime minister. He should have gone by now."

Mr Johnson apologised to MPs after senior official Sue Gray found “failures of leadership and judgment” as gatherings were held while England was under coronavirus restrictions in 2020 and 2021.

Criticism came from across the House, including from former prime minister Theresa May who asked whether Mr Johnson either did not “read the rules”, understand them, or “didn’t think the rules applied to No 10”.

But by the time he met with parliamentarians in a rare gathering of the whole party later, a U-turn which promised to publish the eventual report in full and promises to shake up how No 10 and the Cabinet Office are run appeared to have calmed tensions, at least for the time being.

Ms Gray revealed in an “update” that of the 16 alleged gatherings she had deemed necessary to investigate, at least 12 linked to government properties in Downing Street and Whitehall were being investigated by the police.

This included at least four directly linked to Mr Johnson either because he was reported to have attended, or because they are reported to have taken place in his flat.

Three alleged gatherings not previously reported were also included in the report.

But the police investigation had prevented her from delivering any meaningful report as to not impact the inquiry.

Mr Johnson told MPs in the Commons: “Firstly, I want to say sorry – and I’m sorry for the things we simply didn’t get right and also sorry for the way this matter has been handled.

“It’s no use saying this or that was within the rules and it’s no use saying people were working hard. This pandemic was hard for everyone.”

He added: “I get it, and I will fix it. I want to say to the people of this country I know what the issue is.”