BORIS JOHNSON has said he will enter the race to be the next leader of the Conservatives when British Prime Minister Theresa May steps down.
The former Foreign Secretary confirmed he wanted the lead the party at an event in Manchester earlier this week.
“I don’t think that is any particular secret to anybody. But there is no vacancy at present,” Johnson said.
Johnson, who was also previously Mayor of London, faces competition from up to 20 rivals in the race to succeed May. Some Conservative MPs said they would quit the party if he becomes leader.
It comes as calls have grown for May to set out a timetable for stepping down as Conservative MPs continue to be critical of her handling of Brexit.
The prime minister met with the chairman of the 1922 Committee of backbench MPs Graham Brady where she agreed to set out a timetable for her departure.
May is also set to bring her Brexit Withdrawal Agreement back to Parliament for a final vote in the first week of June.
The news also comes as a judge is due to decide if a legal case against Johnson over claims he made during the Brexit referendum campaign can be heard.
Marcus Ball accused Johnson of misconduct in public office over his claim that Britain sends almost €400 million a week to Brussels. The claim has since been discredited by statisticians and EU specialists.