Theresa May's speech overshadowed by coughing fit and protester interrupting her with P45

Announced plan for reigniting ‘home ownership’, modern, compassionate Britain’

What should have been remembered as a landmark speech in the political career of British Prime Minister Theresa May, turned out to be series of unfortunate events.

May was addressing her party for the first time today since the embarrassing loss in the snap election of June but her speech got weakened by her feeble health and by a protestor who breached security and handed her a P45 notice, saying foreign minister Boris Johnson had asked him to do so. P45 is the form British people get when they leave their job. All this while, the ministers looked on in horror.

Theresa May

Source: @Photoshot

May began her speech by talking about why she joined the party 40 years ago, highlighting that the things that have made her most proud have not been the positions held but “knowing that I made a difference - helped those who cannot be heard”.

She went on to deliver a call for a “modern, compassionate Britain” and announced for an independent review of the Mental Health Act. She also said that justice would be done for the families of those killed and injured in the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

A major theme of May’s speech today was the promise of a “British dream” for young people. May spoke of plans to “reignite home ownership” in UK and said the government plans to invest an additional £2bn in affordable housing, taking the total budget up to almost £9bn. She went on to say that if the ministers made the land available and gave young people the skills to build the houses, the builders must ensure they “build the homes our country needs.”

Theresa May

Source: @Photoshot

Speaking about Brexit, May said that she was confident they will find a deal that works for Britain and Europe. Calling it a “deep and special partnership”, May reassured European citizens living in the UK that they are welcome here and urged negotiators to reach agreement on this policy “because we want you to stay”.

She also apologised to activists in Manchester for an election campaign that was “too scripted, too presidential”.
The prankster who handed May the P45 has been identified as Simon Brodkin, who performs under the name Lee Nelson. He reportedly gained access to the guarded conference by posing as a professional photographer. He was later arrested.

Theresa May

Source: @Photoshot

BBC’s political editor wrote that the conference was about restoring May’s authority: “It may prove instead to have been further undermined”

Talking about May’s performance today, Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson said: “If ever there was a metaphor for battling through adversity, that was it.”

Nicola Sturgeon, the Scottish First Minister, also tweeted: “Spare a thought for those of us still to deliver our conference speech and now fretting about all the things that could go wrong”

Sources close to the prime minister have said that the PM had caught the “conference cold”, and that her many interviews and meetings this week have taken their toll on her voice.

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