Rishi Sunak speaks from 10 Downing Street after becoming UK Prime Minister (Photo: @sajidjavid/Twitter)
On Tuesday, new UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, appointed by King Charles III earlier today, acknowledged that Britain is facing “a profound economic crisis”.
In his first speech from 10 Downing Street as the Prime Minister, Sunak made an effort to bridge the divisions within the Conservative Party by mentioning his predecessors Boris Johnson and Liz Truss. Sunak said he will always be grateful to Johnson for his “incredible achievements” as the prime minister. He also recalled Johnson’s warmth and generosity of spirit.
I will unite our country, not with words, but with action.
I will work day in and day out to deliver for you.
Watch my speech from Downing Street 👇 pic.twitter.com/diOBuwBqXc
— Rishi Sunak (@RishiSunak) October 25, 2022
Wary of criticism, and opposition from the grassroots Conservative members, Sunak reached out to the masses as well. He said: “Trust is earned, and I will earn yours”. He said: “I stand here before you ready to lead our country into the future, to put your needs above politics, to reach out and build a government that represents the very best traditions of my party. Together we can achieve incredible things”.
Giving a glimpse into his policy plans, he said he will work for “a stronger NHS, better schools, safer streets, control of our borders, protecting our environment, supporting our armed forces and levelling up.”
Reassuring Britons, Sunak said that he will fix some of the mistakes made by Liz Truss – his predecessor. “That work begins immediately. My government will build an economy that makes the most of the Brexit opportunities”, he said, even as he praised Truss for trying to stimulate growth during her short duration.
Sunak will have to work hard on improving the battered image of the Conservatives as the country has seen three prime ministers this year after an endless bout of infighting.
PM #RishiSunak made it clear that economy is going to be a top priority when he stood on the steps of Downing Street a short while ago…India is a big investor in UK, UK is a big investor in India. We want to double trade by 2030: Alex Ellis, British High Commissioner to India pic.twitter.com/mf8jsmtXg1
— ANI (@ANI) October 25, 2022
He has also rejected calls for early elections as demanded by various opposition parties including the Labour Party.
With his formal ascension to the top job today, eyes are on how Sunak will form a cabinet that delivers Britain out of the energy crisis as well as rising inflation at a time when a raging Russia-Ukraine war singes Europe.