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The chairman of a Conservative group in Essex has announced he will resign from the party in the wake of “Plan B” Covid measures being introduced by the government.

Charlie Sansom, who was chairman of the South Basildon Conservatives, announced this morning (December 9) he would be sending his letter of resignation to the party headquarters.

Mr Sansom, who has been a member of the Tory party for three years, said he has lost faith in Boris Johnson’s government and felt he had to step away.

Read more:The latest coronavirus news from across Essex

The news comes after the Prime Minister announced on Wednesday (December 8) that work-from-home guidance will return, Covid health certificates are to become mandatory in large venues and mask rules will be extended to combat the rapidly-spreading strain in England.

But he is facing probing questions and backlash from MPs within his own party over the decision and his credibility following allegations staff in Downing Street held a Christmas party in December last year, when London was in Tier 3 restrictions.



Charlie Sansom said he will be resigning as chairman of the South Basildon Conservatives over his views on "Plan B" restrictions
Charlie Sansom said he will be resigning as chairman of the South Basildon Conservatives over his views on “Plan B” restrictions

Speaking to BBC Essex this morning, Mr Sansom said his view on Plan B was “in a word; terrible”.

He said the discussion of mandatory vaccinations and vaccine passports were troubling and that people should be free to choose to have the jab – but insisted he was not anti-vaccine and has had two jabs himself.

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He said: “I am actually going to leave the party because of this. I cannot morally defend the party I consider to be moving in a very tyrannical direction and I’ll be sending my written letter of resignation to my chairman later on today.

“I’ve been a conservative mind all my life, I’ve been a member of the party for three years, I’ve tirelessly campaigned for the party, but my morality, something in my stomach tells me this is just not right.”

He added: “I think this whole Christmas party was a nail in the coffin for them. Last year people died from this virus, you weren’t allowed to go and see your relatives at Christmas, but people in the government were having a party.

“These things really resonate with people, and they don’t forget, you’re talking about people’s families here. We’re not talking about bin collections or potholes, we’re talking about the government tell you, you can’t see your family, while they have a jolly up. They’re morally bankrupt.”

Elsewhere in the Tory party, Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross said on Wednesday he believes “some sort of party” had taken place and the Prime Minister should quit if he is found to have misled Parliament over the gathering.

Mark Francois, Tory MP for Rayleigh and Wickford, said he “did not know” if a party took place but welcomed an investigation into the matter.

He said: “I honestly don’t know whether the alleged party at No. 10 took place or not but as the PM has just announced an inquiry by the Cabinet Secretary, I will keenly await the outcome, as no doubt will my constituents.”

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