19 June 2017

Michael Gove appointed environment secretary in cabinet reshuffle

Michael Gove has made a shock return to the cabinet as environment secretary after being sacked by Theresa May last year.

Gove’s return to the cabinet was the main development of a muted reshuffle of May’s top team, noted for how many senior positions went unchanged. The former department secretary, Andrea Leadsom – May’s 2016 leadership rival – was shifted sideways to become leader of the House of Commons.

His new role will mean the prominent Brexit campaigner has the difficult task of restructuring British agricultural subsidies for when the UK exits the EU. As education secretary, he attempted to remove global warming from the school curriculum – though he insisted the motivation was slimming down the syllabus and not an objection to the science.

Gove’s return is a signal May is prepared to put their personal animosity behind her, sparked by a bitter row over the alleged infiltration of Birmingham schools by hardline Islamists. Gove’s allies at the Department for Education blamed the Home Office for the scandal, with May’s aides retaliating by publishing confidential cabinet correspondence attacking Gove.

Reacting to his appointment, Gove told Sky News: “I was quite surprised, I have to say … I genuinely didn’t expect this role. I am delighted to be part of the government, I am delighted to be able to support Theresa to ensure that we have a government capable of delivering on the people’s wishes.”

Credit to: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/jun/11/theresa-may-appoints-close-ally-damian-green-first-secretary-state