Johnny Mercer 'on brink' of quitting: Veterans minister demands to see PM for urgent talks

Johnny Mercer 'on brink' of quitting: Veterans minister demands to see PM for urgent talks

The Plymouth Moor View MP is thought to be angry at the failure to protect veterans who served in Northern Ireland during The Troubles from prosecution. Mr Mercer is a veteran himself, serving in the Army for ten years between 2003 and 2013.

The MP was first elected in 2015 and said he entered Parliament with an aim of improving the care of veterans.

Since becoming veterans minister he has been critical of the Government for the slow “pace of progress” on promised legislation to protect soldiers who served in Northern Ireland against historical prosecutions.

Two weeks ago he said his commitment to protecting those who served was “unwavering”.

He added: “To try and shift UK Government position towards looking after these people and preventing the repeated and vexatious nature of litigation against those who served is a huge task.

READ MORE: SNP attacked after failing armed forces veterans due to tax hikes

The spokesman said he was not aware of any conversations between Mr Mercer and Boris Johnson today.

The controversial amendment to the Overseas Operations Bill will be debated and voted on in the House of Commons tomorrow afternoon.

It is thought Mr Mercer will not resign until after the Bill has passed through the chamber.

The outspoken Tory MP only agreed to take on his position in Government because Mr Johnson pledged to end historic prosecutions.

In 2019 Mr Mercer went on strike against Theresa May when she was in No10, pledging to no longer vote with the Government in protest at her failure to end the “abhorrent process”.

He also previously hinted he was willing to step down in 2019, disillusioned with the lack of progress made on the issue.

However, he appeared to change his mind following when Mr Johnson took charge of the party.

Mr Mercer described the Uxbridge MP as “the man of the moment”.

Published at Tue, 20 Apr 2021 12:13:00 +0000