Who is Priti Patel and why is she being called a bully?

Who is Priti Patel?

Some of you may recognise her from Skepta’s tweet in September.

Whilst Skepta’s obvious thirst is somewhat amusing, it’s important to understand who Priti Patel is, what she stands for, and why she is currently at the receiving end of a lot of criticism.

Priti Patel is a Conservative politician, best known for being an MP for Witham, and currently serving as Home Secretary. She is therefore in charge of law enforcement, national security and immigration.

In an article put together by gal-dem magazine last year, they outlined Patel’s worrying track record. This included but is not limited to:

  • Questionable moral compass (including voting against same-sex marriage and being a supporter of the death penalty)
  • Corruption (breaking ministerial code on a number occasions whilst working as International Development Secretary)
  • Hostile immigration policies (many of which would have denied Patel’s own family entry, who emigrated to the country in the 1960s)

She has most recently been under fire following the publication of an inquiry that looked into allegations of bullying made against her by her staff.

Standards chief Sir Alex Allan found that Patel had broken ministerial code governing minister’s behaviour, through not treating her civil servants with consideration and respect. Staff members have claimed that Patel was known for often “shouting and swearing” at her employees, and creating an environment of “fear“.

Whilst it would be common practice for a minister to resign following such findings, PM Boris Johnson has dismissed the inquiry. He has stated that he does not think she is a bully and has “full confidence” in her, pointing to “mitigating circumstances” in Allan’s findings and Patel’s “fulsome apology”. This has since led to Sir Allan quitting in protest.

Indeed, Patel has released a statement, however it has fallen in line with many of her previous “apologies” whereby she says she is sorry “if she has offended people” rather than taking responsibility for her actions. She also appears to look amused at the allegations.

This is not the first time Patel has appeared to find the possibility of her actions affecting people negatively amusing. Just last year, she was reprimanded by Andrew Marr during an interview, where she appeared to laugh at the possibility of her Brexit proposals leading to catastrophic results for manufacturing industries.

A source has also recently claimed that Johnson asked for Patel’s bullying inquiry to be made “palatable” i.e. acceptable enough to be brushed under the carpet.

Indeed, seeing as Patel shows no sign of resigning from her role, it would seem again that there is one rule for Boris’ acquaintances, and another for everyone else. Sound familiar? (cough…Dominic Cummings…cough)…

 

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