Foreign Secretary James Cleverly has publicly appealed to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to allow him to remain in his current position rather than taking on a new cabinet role. This comes after Defence Secretary Ben Wallace announced his intention to step down, sparking speculation about upcoming changes in the British government.
The media has suggested that Cleverly is being considered as a potential replacement for Wallace. However, when asked about this possibility at the Aspen Security Forum in Washington D.C., Cleverly expressed his contentment with his current role. He stated, “I adore being foreign secretary. My observation is that you become better at the job the more you do it, the more relationships you are able to build.”
Cleverly further explained to the American audience that British officials are technically appointed by the king at the prime minister’s recommendation. In a playful manner, he appealed to them by saying, “If anyone in the UK is watching, listening, particularly you prime minister, I very much want to stay put.” He even joked, “You’ll see nail marks down the parquet flooring in my office if anyone tries to drag me out.”
According to media reports, the anticipated reshuffle may take place as early as September. Alongside Cleverly, other contenders being considered for the Defence Secretary role include Tom Tugendhat, the current security minister, Penny Mordaunt, the leader of the House of Commons, James Heappey, the armed forces minister, and John Glen, a close ally of Sunak who serves as chief secretary to the Treasury.
Cleverly’s public appeal reflects his desire to continue serving as the Foreign Secretary, highlighting his passion for the role. He believes that his experience and the relationships he has built over time make him even more effective in the position. However, as the reshuffle approaches, the final decision rests with Prime Minister Sunak.
In conclusion, James Cleverly has made an uncommon appeal to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, expressing his strong preference to remain as the UK Foreign Secretary. As speculations about upcoming changes in the cabinet continue, it remains to be seen whether Cleverly will get his wish or if another candidate will be chosen to replace Defence Secretary Ben Wallace. The decision holds significance for the future of the British government and its foreign affairs strategy.