Dominic Cummings could leave his Downing Street adviser role by Christmas
Dominic Cummings, Boris Johnson’s senior adviser, will leave his position by the end of the year, according to reports from Downing Street.
A government source said that Mr Cummings will be “out of government by Christmas,” the BBC reports.
A sign of a possible government shift
Rumours began to circulate earlier this week that Mr Cummings was threatening to resign over a split at the heart of government.
The dispute is believed to be about who will become Boris Johnson’s chief of staff - a row which reportedly caused Mr Johnson’s Comms Director, Lee Cain, to step down.
Mr Cummings’ resignation is being taken as a sign that the government is trying to shift direction, potentially moving away from the elements of the party more closely aligned with Vote Leave.
Speaking to the BBC earlier this week, Mr Cummings said, “Rumours of me threatening to resign are invented.”
He also said that his “position hasn’t changed since [his] January blog.”
In the much-publicised blog post, Mr Cummings appealed for “weirdos and misfits with odd skills” to work in Downing Street, stating that “we want to improve performance and make me much less important - and within a year, largely redundant.”
Who is Dominic Cummings?
Many people became familiar with Dominic Cummings after he travelled across the country during the first period of lockdown, resulting in a major scandal which prompted him to deliver an unprecedented media statement defending his actions.
Mr Cummings has been a polarising figure across the political spectrum, and within the Conservative party.
Speaking to the Guardian, one Conservative MP described Cummings’ time in Downing Street as a “reign of terror” while, conversely, Transport Secretary Grant Schapps told Sky News that the key adviser “will be missed.”
Unfair dismissal case
The news comes as a former aide who worked with Dominic Cummings has agreed to settle an employment dispute involving the adviser out of court, rather than going to an employment tribunal.
Sonia Khan launched an unfair dismissal claim, after she was sacked by Mr Cummings earlier this year.
Ms Khan’s claims of unfair dismissal and sex discrimination were due to be heard at an employment tribunal in December, where Mr Cummings would have been expected to appear, but Ms Khan has agreed a five figure settlement deal with the government, according to Politico’s Playbook.