Gavin Williamson will be ‘a thorn in the Prime Minister’s side’

Gavin Williamson will be ‘a thorn in the prime minister’s side’

Former defence secretary Gavin Williamson

Friday, May 3, 2019

The former director of communications of Downing Street has said that Gavin Williamson, who was sacked as defence secretary on Wednesday, will be “a thorn in the Prime Minister’s side”.

Mr Williamson was sacked after Theresa May said she had “compelling evidence” he was responsible for a leak from a National Security Council meeting.

The meeting was discussing the security risks around allowing the Chinese company Huawei to bid for 5G network contracts.

Mr Williamson denies that he was responsible for the leak.

Katie Perrior told talkRADIO’s Mike Graham that because Mr Williamson had previously been chief whip "he knows everything".

She added that sacking Mr Williamson would not “be the end” of the debate around Huawei.

“I do worry that Gavin on the backbenches will be a real thorn in the prime minister’s side,” she said.

“Be he was chief whip, he knows everything about everyone.”

She added: “The journalist is remaining silent because he is protecting his source.

“There is no reason why he shouldn’t. It is a bit of a mess really.”

Ms Perrior said that sacking Mr Williamson was “one step too far” for many Conservative MPs.

 “There are a lot of Conservatives out in the countryside that were already angry with her over Brexit,” she said.

“On one hand she has shown strength to try and regroup and say that leaks will be published, which is the right thing to do.

“On the other hand, maybe she did not have the political capital to do it.”

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Defence secretary Gavin Williamson sacked over Huawei leak