A new photo showing British Prime Minister Boris Johnson not following government advice on socializing back in 2020, when only two people were allowed to meet in public due to coronavirus pandemic, sparked a fresh controversy in the UK.
The photograph exclusively shared by The Guardian newspaper shows Johnson and his wife Carrie with their newborn baby, as well as some staff sitting around a table in Downing Street garden with wine on the table.
The photo was released by the newspaper after the prime minister’s office denied an allegation that a social event was held in May 2020 and that social restrictions set by the government were breached at Downing Street.
A spokesman for Johnson said the Downing Street staff were working in the garden, however, the photo allegedly taken in May 2020 shows 19 people were in the garden, flouting the restrictions.
Johnson and his wife Carrie, who appears to be holding their newborn baby, were pictured at a table with a cheeseboard and wine, along with two people who were believed to be a civil servant and an aide.
“Work meetings often take place in the Downing Street garden in the summer months,” a statement said.
“On this occasion, there were staff meetings following a No. 10 press conference.”
The new photo has added to one of Johnson’s hardest times in the office, especially after developments last week as opposition within is Conservative Party has grown over coronavirus regulations, a major by-election defeat in North Shropshire, and the shocking resignation of Brexit Minister David Frost.
The photo followed a series of allegations that Downing Street staff flouted rules at Christmas parties and other social events. Simon Case, the cabinet secretary, had to step down after Johnson ordered an investigation into allegations. It emerged Case’s own office had hosted a party.