Stuart Andrew stands down as part of wave of departures following botched response to Chris Pincher resignation
The housing minister has resigned from his job as part of the string of top level departures from government in wake of the scandal over Boris Johnson’s handling of allegations against former deputy chief whip Chris Pincher.
Stuart Andrew published his resignation letter on Twitter just after the close of prime minister’s questions at 12.30, stating he could no longer tolerate “having to defend the indefensible”.
Andrew’s resignation means the prime minister will now be looking to appoint his twelfth housing minister in the 12 years since the Conservative Party was elected to government in 2010.
Andrew, who is MP for the marginal “red wall” constituency of Pudsey, has been in the post less than six months, replacing Chris Pincher in the role of housing minister, who’s dramatic resignation last week has prompted this latest political crisis.
Boris Johnson has been hit by a wave of resignations last night and this morning following the decisions by chancellor Rishi Sunak and health secretary Sajid Javid to stand down yesterday after evidence was published making clear Downing Street had misled journalists in its initial response to Chris Pincher’s resignation as chief whip.
Andrew’s resignation comes just a week after a keynote speech at the Chartered Institute of Housing annual conference in Manchester, where he said housebuilding rates would begin to climb again, but also said the sector paid “far too much attention” to housebuilding numbers.
In his resignation statement Andrews said he had immensely enjoyed his time as housing minister and offered his apologies to the sector for his brief tenure, but said that “our party, particularly our members and more importantly our great country, deserve better”.
It is with sadness that I am resigning as Housing Minister.— Stuart Andrew (@StuartAndrew) July 6, 2022
I pay tribute to all my ministerial colleagues, officials, and civil servants in the Department and the wider sector.
I look forward to continuing to serve my constituents in Pudsey, Horsforth, and Aireborough. pic.twitter.com/wTnrr9rcSu
While he did not refer specifically to the changing narrative emanating from Number 10 regarding the Chris Pincher affair, Andrew said: “There comes a time when you have to look at your own personal integrity and that time is now. Therefore, given recent events I have no other choice than to resign.
“I have seen the huge sacrifice our members make in volunteering considerable hours to campaign on our behalf and I cannot, in all good conscience, tolerate them having to defend the indefensible.”