Brexit-supporting Stratford MP Nadhim Zahawi has thrown his weight behind the Prime Minister as she prepares to face a crucial no confidence vote in Parliament tonight.
The vote on Theresa May’s leadership was triggered after 48 Conservative MPs submitted letters of no confidence in the Prime Minister.
Mr Zahawi has spoken previously of his support for the Prime Minister and her Brexit deal and this morning reaffirmed his backing.
He said: “I am extremely saddened and frustrated that a vote of confidence has been called in the Prime Minister. I fear that the Nation will perceive this as an act of enormous self-indulgence and irresponsibility.
“The Prime Minister has put a Brexit Withdrawal Agreement on the table and is currently in the middle of trying to assuage colleagues’ concerns by going back to the EU to seek clarification on the issue of the Irish backstop. The interruption that this vote of confidence has now caused is therefore precisely the opposite of what is needed right now.
“Nonetheless the ballot is going ahead and I would plead with colleagues to vote in support of the Prime Minister at this crucial time. To do otherwise would be an abrogation of our responsibility. It would not be in the national interest to change our leader while we are in the concluding stages of negotiating our withdrawal from the EU. Our focus should be on the Brexit deal and pressing domestic issues, not on blinkered in-fighting and leadership contests”
He earlier tweeted: “I am backing @theresa_may tonight. We do not need further instability and division. Colleagues need to think of the National interest.”
Kenilworth and Southam MP has also given his backing saying: “I will be supporting the Prime Minister tonight. Not only because she deserves that support but also because the country does not need this distraction right now.
“The Prime Minister has focussed entirely on the national interest. I hope my colleagues will too.”
Speaking outside 10 Downing Street this morning, the Prime Minister warned Conservative MPs that changing leader now would put Brexit at risk and create uncertainty.
She added: “I will contest that vote with everything I have got.”