In her first speech as Prime Minister, new British Prime Minister Liz Truss promised to boost economic growth by cutting taxes and this week to take action against rising energy prices. In an appearance on Tuesday outside Downing Street, the traditional London seat of British prime ministers, she also pledged to tackle the crisis of the overburdened public health service
Truss said she would focus on solving the problems that are “holding back” Britain. According to her, the country faces serious global obstacles due to the covid-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine. “I am confident that together we can weather the storm. We can rebuild our economy and become the modern great Britain that I know we can be,” Truss said.
Shortly after taking office on Tuesday, Truss appointed a number of new cabinet members. Finance Minister Nadhim Zahawi, who was replaced by the current Trade Minister Kwasi Kwarteng, left office, among others. Truss, who led the Foreign Office during the government of her predecessor Boris Johnson, will be replaced at the head of this office by the current education minister, James Cleverly. The Ministry of Defense will continue to be led by Ben Wallace.
Thérèse Coffey, who headed the Ministry of Labor in the previous government, was appointed Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Health. Coffey, who British media say is a close friend of Truss, became the first ever female deputy prime minister.
Home Minister Priti Patel announced her resignation on Monday. She said she would step down once Truss officially became prime minister. She was replaced in office today by Attorney General Suella Braverman.
On Tuesday, the former Deputy Prime Minister and Justice Minister Dominic Raab also confirmed the end of his term of office, who supported Truss’s successor Rishi Sunak in the internal party vote for the post of Conservative Party leader. Truss has today chosen Brandon Lewis, who was Northern Ireland minister until July, as justice minister.
British media note that Truss has appointed a very diverse cabinet. Not one of the four most important posts in the country – the Prime Minister’s Office, the Ministry of Finance, the Home Office or the Foreign Office – will not be held by a white man, the BBC reported.
The prime minister thanked her predecessor, Boris Johnson, whom she replaced as prime minister on Tuesday, for completing Brexit, helping to introduce covid-19 vaccines in Britain and standing up to Russia, which attacked neighboring Ukraine.
Truss’s first official speech as Prime Minister was marked by torrential rain, and for a while it was unclear whether the speech would take place outside 10 Downing Street or would have to be moved inside. Due to traffic delays and showers, Truss ended up performing later, but spoke outdoors as planned because the rain had stopped.
Before her arrival in Downing Street, crowds of journalists, representatives of the governing Conservative Party and government office workers hid under umbrellas. Staff at the Prime Minister’s Office took turns bringing out and hiding the lectern, but eventually returned it to number ten and dried the microphones just before the Prime Minister’s arrival.
After the speech, Truss briefly posed for photographers with her husband Hugh O’Leary before entering the Prime Minister’s Office. Now she is waiting for the formation of the government and the official appointment of new cabinet members.
Video: The new British Prime Minister is a hard worker. I voted for her, says the Czech member of the conservatives
Liz Truss is someone who can get things done. And she performed it after Brexit, says Matěj Trávníček living in London. | Video: Daniela Písařovicová