“We’ll take them to court. We’ll defend the rights of British workers.”

Boris Johnson, House of Commons

March 22, 2022

Facts

After P&O ferries dismissed 800 workers without notice, Boris Johnson told the House of Commons: “We are taking legal action… against the company concerned…. that is the right thing to do because it seems to me they have broken the law.”

He added: “We’ll take them to court. We’ll defend the rights of British workers.”

But a week later, Transport Minister Grant Shapps admitted: “The government are not in a position to take court action.”

Verdict

Boris Johnson was giving false hope to P & O workers by telling MPs that he would take P & O to court. He made a promise which he broke within a week. 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.  Ministers who knowingly mislead Parliament will be expected to offer their resignation to the Prime Minister.” Boris Johnson was misleading parliament in defiance of the Ministerial Code. 

We approached Mr Johnson’s office, the Cabinet Office and the No 10 Press Office to give the Prime Minister a chance to comment, but received no response. 

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