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UK PM accused of clinging to power for wedding bash

In this file photo taken on October 6, 2021, Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson (L) and his wife Carrie (R) arrive at the Manchester Central convention center ahead of his keynote speech on the final day of the annual Conservative Party Conference in Manchester, northwest England. (Ben Stansall/AFP)
In this file photo taken on October 6, 2021, Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson (L) and his wife Carrie (R) arrive at the Manchester Central convention center ahead of his keynote speech on the final day of the annual Conservative Party Conference in Manchester, northwest England. (Ben Stansall/AFP)

After lavishly redecorating their Downing Street flat, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie now risk being homeless — and face calls to find a new venue for their wedding party.

The couple married in a secret ceremony in London in May 2021 and were limited to having 30 guests at a garden party in Downing Street afterward because of COVID restrictions.

They have been planning a more glamorous reception at Chequers, the prime minister’s country retreat northwest of London, on July 30.

In announcing his resignation, Johnson said he would stay in office until a new Conservative leader is elected in the coming months, possibly until October.

But the Daily Mirror, Guardian and others reported that the timeline has more to do with his desire not to lose the perks of Chequers ahead of the bash, explaining that invitations had already gone out.

Critics said Johnson had the 16th-century country home on his mind in his resignation speech outside 10 Downing Street, when at one point he misspoke in thanking “the wonderful staff here at Chequers.”

“As much as we’d all like to have a lavish wedding at the taxpayer’s expense in Chequers, he won’t be able to do so because the British public will find it abhorrent,” London mayor Sadiq Khan tells LBC radio.

“And those decent Tories… will not accept a situation where [Johnson] is seeking to stay on as prime minister for his personal benefit, rather than the national interest,” the opposition Labour politician says.

Chequers was already the subject of recent headlines over claims that the Johnsons wanted to build a treehouse there worth £150,000 ($180,000) for their two-year-old son Wilf. The Johnsons denied the allegation.

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