Rishi Sunak. Photo:AFP
London: Indian-origin former chancellor Rishi Sunak on Sunday formally declared his candidacy to contest the Conservative Party leadership election to replace Liz Truss as British Prime Minister and fix the economy.
The 42-year-old is the clear frontrunner as he raced ahead with the backing of at least 128 Tory members of Parliament, even as loyalists of his former boss – Boris Johnson – claimed he has the necessary 100 MPs needed to make it to the shortlist.
While the former Tory leader and prime minister is yet to officially declare his candidacy, the contest is shaping up as a three-way fight between Sunak, Johnson and third-placed Leader of the Commons Penny Mordaunt.
“The United Kingdom is a great country but we face a profound economic crisis,” Sunak tweeted in his campaign pitch.
“That's why I am standing to be Leader of the Conservative Party and your next Prime Minister. I want to fix our economy, unite our party and deliver for our country,” he said.
In an accompanying vision statement, the former finance minister highlighted his track record of serving in the Cabinet, helping to steer the economy through the toughest of times with the COVID pandemic.
“The challenges we face now are even greater. But the opportunities – if we make the right choice – are phenomenal. I have the track record of delivery, a clear plan to fix the biggest problems we face and I will deliver on the promise of the 2019 manifesto,” he tweeted.
“There will be integrity, professionalism and accountability at every level of the government I lead and I will work day in and day out to get the job done. I am asking you for the opportunity to help fix our problems,” he added.
Prime Minister Truss on Thursday announced her resignation after an open revolt against her leadership in the Conservative Party.