“To the best of my knowledge, everybody is getting their passport within four to six weeks.”

Boris Johnson, Prime Minister’s Questions

May 24, 2022

Facts

Keir Starmer asked Boris Johnson about delays to passport processing. Johnson replied that all passports were being received within a maximum of six weeks.

A spokesperson for the Passport Office told Full Fact: “Since April 2021, we’ve clearly stated that people should allow up to ten weeks when applying for their passport to factor in the increased demand”. 

Verdict

Boris Johnson gave himself leeway by prefacing his answer with the phrase “to the best of my knowledge.” Nevertheless, he made a misleading statement to parliament, which he has not corrected. “According to the Ministerial Code,  “It is of paramount importance that Ministers give accurate and truthful information to Parliament, correcting any inadvertent error at the earliest opportunity.”  Johnson’s subsequent failure to correct the record means that he was (and remains) in breach of the Ministerial Code.

We approached Boris Johnson's office, No10 Press Office and the Cabinet Office to give them a chance to comment, but received no response.

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