Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn now heads a party in crisis, with nearly half of his shadow cabinet walking out in protest against his handling of the EU referendum.
The Labour leader stood defiant in his position on Monday, despite criticism of his weak leadership during the referendum campaign. Shadow health secretary Heidi Alexander resigned yesterday, with prominent frontbencher Stephen Kinnock following her lead this morning. In a statement, Kinnock expressed his respect for Corbyn as a leader, before saying that his “half-hearted and lacklustre role” in the referendum led him to the “conclusion that [Corbyn is] no longer able to lead our party.”
These resignations were then followed by latest shadow foreign minister Diana Johnson, shadow civil society minister Anna Turley, shadow defence minister Toby Perkins and Wayne David, the shadow Cabinet Office, Scotland and justice minister.
Despite his cabinet’s lack of confidence Corbyn will continue as Labour leader for the foreseeable future, stating on Sunday that he would not “betray the trust” of the people who voted for him and vowed to stand against anyone challenging him for the leadership.
Jeremy Corbyn has reappointed ministers as fast as they can resign, filling at least ten positions so far; these include the promotion of Diane Abbot to shadow health secretary, Emily Thornberry to shadow foreign secretary and Clive Lewis to shadow defence.