UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak has resigned over the attack on Boris Johnson

British Chancellor Rishi Sunak (C) listens as Prime Minister Boris Johnson (L) addresses his cabinet before the weekly cabinet meeting at Downing Street on June 07, 2022 in London, England.

Leon Neal | Getty Images

LONDON — British Finance Minister Rishi Sunak resigned on Tuesday, saying the government must be run “properly, competently and seriously.”

Health Secretary Sajid Javid also resigned in protest at Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s leadership.

The British pound hit a new low in March 2020 following the announcements. The currency fell 1.5% for the session, reaching 1.1923 vs dollar.

“The public rightly expects government to be run properly, competently and seriously,” Sunak said in a tweet on Tuesday night.

“I recognize that this may be my last ministerial job, but I believe these standards are worth fighting for and that is why I am resigning.”

In a letter to the prime minister, Sunak added: “I am sorry to be leaving the government, but I have reluctantly come to the conclusion that we cannot go on like this.”

It comes after a series of scandals that have plagued Johnson’s leadership over the past few months.

The Prime Minister narrowly survived a vote of confidence — challenged by his own lawmakers — last month. But discontent with his leadership, both within and outside his own Conservative Party, persists.

Johnson has repeatedly resisted calls to resign from across the political spectrum, despite continued public anger over a long and growing list of charges.

The latest scandal to erupt in Downing Street surrounds Conservative MP Chris Pincher. The former deputy chief whip was suspended last week over allegations he drunkenly groped two men at a private members’ club.

Johnson on Tuesday night, just minutes before the resignations, apologized for appointing Pincher as deputy chief whip – a senior role in the party – despite knowing of an investigation into his conduct in 2019.

Meanwhile in May, an incriminating report in several high-ranking Covid-19 Lockdown-breaking parties, called “partygates,” at Johnson’s office and residence were released, adding to calls for Johnson’s resignation.

In a letter to Johnson published on Tuesday, Javid said the recent vote of confidence was “a moment of humility, grip and a new direction”.

“I regret to say, however, that it is clear to me that this situation will not change under your leadership – and therefore you have lost my trust,” he added.

— CNBC’s Sam Meredith and Holly Elliott contributed to this report

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