The UK’s top civil servant and nationwide security adviser to Boris Johnson is stepping down, the federal government has introduced.
Sir Mark Sedwill is leaving each posts – in a dramatic transfer that confirms the prime minister is planning a serious Whitehall shakeup.
The information means he can have served a comparatively quick time period of lower than two years.
David Frost – the UK’s Brexit sherpa – will turn out to be the brand new nationwide security adviser, combining it together with his present job till negotiations with the EU on a commerce deal are full.
Sir Mark was concurrently in command of 400,000 civil servants as cupboard secretary and probably the most senior official advising on security, defence, international coverage and intelligence issues.
Speculation his job was below risk started to develop on Friday, when the Financial Times reported ministers have been briefing he was anticipated to be passed by the tip of 2020.
The Sunday Telegraph then claimed he may very well be ousted inside a day.
Home Secretary Priti Patel didn’t dampen the rumours, failing to deny Sir Mark was dealing with the axe by 10 Downing Street.
Speaking to Sky News’ Sophy Ridge on Sunday, she mentioned: “Reform of the civil service is a matter that will get mentioned in authorities and clearly an enormous position like that’s topic to the prime minister…
“Any reforming authorities shall be based mostly round the kind of supply that our prime minister needs to drive for our nice nation and clearly have the correct of assist round him to ship that.”
Part of a speech by Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove launched over the weekend additionally contained a curiously-timed warning.
“If this authorities is to reform a lot, it should additionally reform itself,” he mentioned.
“The constructions, ambitions and priorities of the federal government machine want to change if actual reform is to be carried out and endure.”
The cupboard secretary is a job that dates again simply over 100 years, and the few occupants who’ve held the title are mentioned to be “at power’s elbow”.
But they’re normally solely obscurely identified amongst most people as a result of they’re a backroom determine and politically impartial.
Sir Mark has served two prime ministers – Theresa May and then Boris Johnson – throughout a time when the civil service has confronted upheaval over Brexit and coronavirus, with staff seconded between departments.
It has additionally confronted criticism, and challenges – reminiscent of just lately when the official civil service Twitter account posted minutes after the PM’s political aide Dominic Cummings’ information convention: “Arrogant and offensive. Can you imagine having to work with these truth twisters?”
Whitehall is already braced for a shake-up within the autumn, following the information that the worldwide growth division is being abolished and merged with the Foreign Office.
The latter’s everlasting secretary was due to keep on to handle the transition – however was let go early by Mr Johnson.