ANDOVER’S MP has defended the Prime Minister following the completion of Sue Gray’s report into alleged parties at Downing Street on several occasions while the country was under coronavirus restrictions.

Kit Malthouse, MP for North West Hampshire and the crime and policing minister, told the Advertiser that Boris Johnson is “profoundly sorry” for what has occurred, and that focus must return to other issues.

When asked how the findings will affect the Conservative party and Mr Johnson’s credibility, Mr Malthouse said: “The Prime Minister made clear that he is profoundly sorry for any mistakes made by Downing Street during the pandemic and that he wants to change to the way government and No10 operate, so that we can get back to dealing with important issues such as growing the economy, handling the crisis in Ukraine and securing the final stages of our exit from the pandemic.”

READ MORE: MPs deny any knowledge of alleged garden party at Downing Street in May 2020

He continued: “The police are now investigating a number of allegations and they should be allowed to complete this work before any further conclusions are drawn.

“Given that he nearly died from Covid himself, the PM is keenly aware of the anger and frustration people feel about this issue and has vowed to rebuild their trust over the months to come."

Mr Johnson apologised to MPs after senior official Sue Gray found “failures of leadership and judgment” as gatherings were held while England was under coronavirus restrictions in 2020 and 2021.

Criticism came from across the House, including from former prime minister Theresa May who asked whether Mr Johnson either did not “read the rules”, understand them, or “didn’t think the rules applied to No 10”.

Ms Gray revealed in an “update” that of the 16 alleged gatherings she had deemed necessary to investigate, at least 12 linked to government properties in Downing Street and Whitehall were being investigated by the police.

SEE ALSO: Andover MP spent more than the Prime Minister last year

This included at least four directly linked to Mr Johnson either because he was reported to have attended, or because they are reported to have taken place in his flat.

Three alleged gatherings not previously reported were also included in the report.

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