Sajid Javid’s ex-aide in brutal swipe at No10 over reshuffle chaos – ‘Power goes to head’

Speaking on the BBC’s Newscast, the former adviser to Sajid Javid claimed behind his sudden resignation lies pressure from a team of people in Number 10 who have gone “a little bit crazy”. She explained: “We Tories have got addictions to these kinds of figures. We had Steve Hilton. They are all kind of much of a muchness, and I know some of them a little bit and like them very much.

“But power really does go to your head.

“And if you’re unelected, it goes to your head in a very different way because you don’t have to go to the dispatch box and be answerable.”

Asked whether she was referring to Dominic Cummings, Boris Johnson’s special adviser, and whether she believed he is “a bit out of control”, she replied: “I’m not going to attribute it to one person because there is a whole system there in Number 10 that sort of supports this.”

She added: “I think if you go into something and you’re so new and you become so powerful instantaneously and you haven’t had the edges knocked off you, I think you go a little bit crazy.”

Mr Javid accused the Prime Minister of setting conditions “any self-respecting minister” would reject – seen as a thinly veiled swipe at his successor.

And he told Mr Johnson in his resignation letter that he believed it was “important as leaders to have trusted teams that reflect the character and integrity that you would wish to be associated with”.

The bombshell – less than a month before the Budget – follows tensions between the ex-chancellor and the PM’s chief adviser Dominic Cummings.

In August, Mr Cummings fired Mr Javid’s aide Sonia Khan and it appears Number 10 wanted to go further in keeping a closer eye on him.

The move – viewed by critics as a power grab by Mr Cummings – means Britain is on to its third chancellor in a year.

Downing Street refused to guarantee that next month’s Budget would go ahead as scheduled, with a spokesman saying only that “extensive preparations have already been carried out for the Budget and they will continue at pace”.

The Prime Minister’s decision to give Number 10 more oversight over the Treasury has been defended by Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick.

Sajid Javid declined the offer of taking up his post as chancellor again during the Cabinet reshuffle after Boris Johnson is said to have asked him to sack his advisers and accept a No 10-appointed team instead.

Mr Jenrick, a former Treasury minister, told BBC Breakfast: “What was proposed and is now going to happen is that we bring together the back office teams that advise the Prime Minister at Number 10 and those that advise the Chancellor.

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“I think that is sensible because we have a lot to do.

“We need to have a strong team that is working as one and that is exactly what we are going to do.”

Mr Jenrick denied that newly-appointed Chancellor Rishi Sunak would be the PM’s “puppet” after accepting terms of office that his predecessor rejected.

The Cabinet minister told the BBC: “That’s completely untrue. I know Rishi Sunak well and he is one of the most talented people in politics today.

“He is going to be a fantastic Chancellor. He brings with him a great deal of experience from the private sector, he’s been an excellent minister in my department, and now at the Treasury.

“He has been heavily involved in the preparations for the Budget in March and I think he is going to hit the ground running.”

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