Mon, 27 May 2024

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The House Live All
By Lord Watson of Wyre Forest
Press releases

Keir Starmer axes leading Corbynites and brings in new blood as he unveils his Shadow Cabinet

Keir Starmer arrives at the BBC on his first full day as Labour leader.

2 min read

Keir Starmer has sacked top allies of Jeremy Corbyn as he unveiled a radical shake-up of the Shadow Cabinet.

The new Labour leader axed Barry Gardiner, Ian Lavery and Jon Trickett to make way for a host of new blood.

It follows the resignations from the Shadow Cabinet of John McDonnell and Diane Abbott.

Anneliese Dodds takes over from Mr McDonnell as Shadow Chancellor, while new deputy leader Angela Rayner replaces Mr Lavery as party chair.

Lisa Nandy, who Sir Keir defeated in the leadership race, takes over from Emily Thornberry as Shadow Foreign Secretary, while Nick Thomas-Symonds replaces Ms Abbott as Shadow Home Secretary.

There is also a frontbench comeback for Rachel Reeves, who becomes Shadow Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, while Jon Ashworth remains Shadow Health Secretary.

Meanwhile, Nick Brown will stay on as Chief Whip.

Sir Keir said: "We are living through a national emergency.

"Under my leadership, the Labour Party will always act in the country’s interest to save lives and protect livelihoods. That will be the number one priority of my Shadow Cabinet.

"We will be a responsible opposition that supports the Government where we believe they are right and challenge them when we believe mistakes are being made."

Sir Keir is expected to put the finishing touches to his new-look team on Monday.

Announcing his departure from the Labour frontbench on Twitter, outgoing Shadow International Trade Secretary Mr Gardiner said: "Just received a courteous phone call from @Keir_Starmer standing me down from Shadow Cabinet.

"I wished him and his new team well. I will continue to do all I can to serve the party and ensure a Labour victory at the next General Election."

Mr Trickett, who had been Shadow Cabinet Office minister, said: "Keir has politely asked me to stand down from shadow cabinet. I wish him and the new team well. I reaffirm my commitment to the cause of working class emancipation and to the North. The struggle continues.

And in a statement, Mr Lavery said: "The crises that face our nation call for big ideas, now is not the time for temerity.

"In grasping these challenges and taking our party back into government, where we can do so much good, our new team will have my unswerving support."

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