He has already seen three Conservative prime ministers in office. Ben Wallace has now announced in The Sunday Times that he wants to resign – possibly as early as the fall.
According to the Sunday Times, British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace intends to resign in the foreseeable future. The newspaper stated that he decided to leave the cabinet in the next cabinet reshuffle. Therefore, the next government reshuffle could be in September. In addition, he will not run in the next parliamentary elections, scheduled for 2024.
“I will not run next time,” the newspaper quoted him as saying. According to the report, however, Wallace has ruled out stepping down as an MP early, thus triggering a by-election in his constituency.
Since 2019 defense minister
Wallace has been Britain’s defense secretary since 2019 and has already seen three prime ministers from his Conservative party. Wallace aspired to become Secretary General of NATO.
However, the hope that he would become Jens Stoltenberg’s successor did not come true. “It’s not going to happen,” The Economist quoted him as saying in June.
Ukraine warned to exercise restraint
As Britain’s defense secretary, Wallace coordinates how to help Ukraine defend itself against Russia. Last week he warned the Ukrainian government not to exercise restraint in criticizing Western arms supplies. During a visit to Kiev, Ukraine presented him with a list of required weapons. “I told the Ukrainians last year when I was driving 11 hours to get a list: I’m not Amazon,” Wallace was quoted as saying by media reports.
Wallace took over as defense minister four years ago, then under Prime Minister Boris Johnson. He later retained the position of Minister in both the government of fellow Conservative Liz Truss and in the incumbent government of Rishi Sunak. Meanwhile, Wallace was also deliberated as a candidate for the top job, but he declined.
There has been speculation about his future before. According to the Sunday Times report, Wallace had already announced his plans to Prime Minister Sunak on June 16. According to The Times, Sunak is preparing to reorganize his main team ahead of the upcoming elections. His party is currently trailing Labor in opinion polls.