Image source, Reuters
By Paul Seddon
Rishi Sunak has decided to keep Jeremy Hunt as chancellor, as the new PM conducts a major reshuffle of the cabinet team.
Mr Hunt was appointed to the job two weeks ago by former leader Liz Truss and reversed many of her tax cuts.
Suella Braverman is back as home secretary, days after quitting over sending an official document via personal email.
The man who replaced her, Grant Shapps, becomes business and energy secretary.
Despite speculation she could be given a top cabinet job, Mr Sunak’s former leadership rival Penny Mordaunt will stay in the mid-ranking role of Commons leader.
Elsewhere, Dominic Raab is back as deputy PM and justice secretary, roles he held under ex-PM Boris Johnson.
Ben Wallace also remains defence secretary, a role he has held since Mr Johnson entered Downing Street in July 2019.
But nine cabinet ministers have left their posts, including top allies of Ms Truss such as ex-Levelling Up Secretary Simon Clarke and former Work and Pensions Secretary Chloe Smith.
Sunak supporter Simon Hart has replaced Wendy Morton, another Truss ally, as the chief whip. Oliver Dowden, another supporter of Mr Sunak, has returned to the cabinet as Cabinet Office Minister.
Brandon Lewis, Robert Buckland, Kit Malthouse and Ranil Jayawardena have also left the cabinet, whilst Nadhim Zahawi has replaced Jake Berry as Conservative Party chairman.
In other departures, Vicky Ford has been sacked as a development minister at the Foreign Office.
Alok Sharma has lost his job as a Cabinet Office minister, although he will remain in charge of UK preparations for the COP27 UN climate summit to be held in Egypt next month.
‘Profound economic crisis’
Earlier, Mr Rees-Mogg acknowledged he was was unlikely to be kept on, as he was “far too close to Liz Truss” to work with Mr Sunak.
Speaking to BBC deputy political editor Vicki Young, he added that he would be “fully supportive” of the new prime minister.
He added that the Conservatives, who now have their third leader in seven weeks, would be “toast” unless they pulled together.
Only a couple of hours after leaving his post, he returned to the Commons to speak as a backbencher during a debate on government legislation to replace EU laws carried over after Brexit.
Mr Sunak has warned “difficult decisions” lie ahead for his new administration, as it grapples with a “profound economic crisis”.
He said he had been elected as Tory leader to “fix” the “mistakes” made by Ms Truss, who has left after just 49 days in office.