Blow for Theresa May as Northern Powerhouse minister quits government
Theresa May has taken another hit after one of her MPs rejected the chance to stay on as Northern Powerhouse minister.
Andrew Percy, the MP for Brigg and Goole, said he had decided to “pursue other challenges” – but stressed that the Prime Minister retained his support.
Mrs May is currently undertaking a reshuffle of her ministers after the Conservatives lost their parliamentary majority in last week’s general election.
Mr Percy was invited to remain in the role of Minister for the Northern Powerhouse at the Department for Communities and Local Government but declined the offer.
In a post on Instagram Mr Percy, who was appointed to the Government less than 12 months ago, wrote: “Was a privilege to be asked to continue serving in my role in Government as a Minister, but I have reluctantly decided to step down and leave the Government.
“I thank the Prime Minister for offering me this role again but I have decided to pursue other challenges. She continues to enjoy my full support from the back benches.
“I will not be making any further comment or doing any media on my decision.”
The Northern Powerhouse was the pet project of former chancellor George Osborne, who has been an outspoken critic of Mrs May since he left parliament to edit the Evening Standard newspaper.
Speaking after his re-election last week, Mr Percy said he supported Mrs May remaining in place despite the Tory losses.
“She’s a good Prime Minister,” he told the Lincolnshire Reporter.
“She’s a genuinely nice woman and there’s not a lot of genuinely nice people in Parliament.”