UK holds general election July 4 , says PM Sunak

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced that the country will hold a general election on July 4.

“I spoke with His Majesty the King to request the dissolution of parliament. The king has granted this request and we will have a general election on July 4,” Sunak said in 10 Downing Street.

The prime minister’s announcement came after new figures showed that inflation in the country has fallen sharply to 2.3 per cent, its lowest level in nearly three years.

The ruling Conservative Party considers this a heartening achievement.

The prime minister’s five pledges in January 2023 included halving inflation, which had climbed to above 11 per cent at the end of 2022.

Sunak said the latest figures mark a “major moment for the economy” and that “brighter days are ahead.”

The Conservatives have been in power for 14 years, but have in recent years faced challenges, ranging from slow economic growth to political instability, demonstrated by frequent changes of party leadership.

The Tories currently lag behind their main rival, the Labour Party, in the latest YouGov polls.

Reacting to Sunak’s call for a summer snap election, Labour leader Keir Starmer said this is “a moment the country needs and has been waiting for.”

“The future of the country is in your hands,” he said. “Together we can stop the chaos, turn the page and start to rebuild Britain and change our country.”

Ed Davey, the Liberal Democrats’ leader, said: “This government is out of touch. It’s out of excuses and it’s out of time. And it’s time to get this Conservative government out of office.”

On May 30, the British parliament will be formally dissolved, and the election campaign will then take place until polling day on July 4.

A statement from Buckingham Palace following Sunak’s announcement said “the Royal Family will, in accordance with normal procedure, postpone engagements that may appear to divert attention or distract from the election campaign.”

“The announcement of a general election was no real surprise given recent economic figures.

“The current government can argue that the country’s economy is headed in the right direction and now is not the time to change strategy,” said Professor John Bryson from the University of Birmingham.

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