UK’s Culture Secretary, Maria Miller, has resigned after a week of mounting pressure over her expenses investigation.
Maria Miller is the second minister to resign from David Cameron’s cabinet in as many months.
Former immigration minister, Mark Harper, resigned in February over allegations that he had employed a maid who had no right to be in the country.
In a letter to David Cameron Mrs Miller told him she was “very grateful” for his personal support during the growing row over her expenses but feared it “has become a distraction from the vital work this Government is doing.”
Mr Cameron said he was saddened by her departure but hoped the Basingstoke MP could make a return “in due course”.
Mrs Miller finally stepped down six days after she was forced to apologise in the House of Commons for her attitude to an inquiry into the allowance claimed on her second home.
The Prime Minister, who had consistently backed his minister, had been under increasing pressure in recent days to sack her from Tory activists and MPs, and Mrs Miller’s position had become untenable.
Sky Political Correspondent Sophy Ridge said the decision to go had rested with Mrs Miller and she had telephoned the Prime Minister to inform him last night.
The announcement of her resignation sparked criticism that it had taken so long for her to step down and raised questions over Mr Cameron’s leadership.
Labour MP John Mann, who made the original expenses complaint against Mrs Miller, said: “Why has it taken five days in what was a clear cut case she had to leave Government that she could be responsible for media freedom in this country after her behaviour?
“I mean where was the Prime Minister’s leadership on this? He should have sacked her straight away when she refused to go.”
Lord Tebbit told Sky News: “If the Prime Minister had taken my advice a week ago, if he had asked for it before I had to give it in public, the issue would have been done and dusted by now.”