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UK PM survives confidence vote among Conservative MPs

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has survived a confidence vote even as a large rebellion in his Conservative Party has dealt his authority a severe blow.

Mr Johnson won the vote on Monday 211 to 148, according to Graham Brady, chairman of the party committee that oversaw the secret ballot.

The result means he cannot face another no-confidence vote for a year.

But Mr Johnson’s 59% share of the vote was less than the 63% achieved by his predecessor, Theresa May, in her confidence vote of December, 2018.

She was replaced seven months later.

Mr Johnson said the result was good for politics and the country.

“I think it’s a convincing result, a decisive result and what it means is that, as a government, we can move on and focus on the stuff that I think really matters to people,” he said.

An ABC report says the PM, renowned for his ability to connect with voters, has recently struggled to turn the page on the so-called ‘partygate’ scandal – namely revelations that he and his staff repeatedly held boozy parties that flouted the COVID-19 restrictions they imposed on the rest of the country.

To remain in office, he needed to win the backing of a simple majority of the 359 Conservative MPs.

The vote was triggered after the required 54 MPs — 15% of the party’s parliamentary membership — officially called for him to step down, following a damning report into the lockdown parties held at his Downing Street residence.

With no clear front-runner to succeed him, most political observers had predicted that Mr Johnson would defeat the challenge.

Writing by Tony Okerafor