Mark Sedwill to stand down as UK’s top civil servant

The UK’s top civil servant Sir Mark Sedwill has confirmed he plans to stand down from the role in September.
In a letter to Boris Johnson, he said it was the right time to go as the government moved to the next phase of its coronavirus recovery plan.
His other role as national security adviser will be taken by Mr Johnson’s chief Brexit adviser David Frost.
His exit follows reports of tensions between him and senior members of Boris Johnson’s team.
Dominic Cummings, regarded as the Prime Minister’s most influential political adviser, has long called for an overhaul of the civil service.
And in a speech on Saturday, Michael Gove, attacked what he called “group think” within its ranks.
A number of top civil servants have either left their posts or are set to depart in the coming months after the Conservatives’ resounding election victory in December.
Philip Rutnam is suing the Home Office for unfair dismissal after quitting in February while Simon McDonald is leaving the Foreign Office in September following its merger with the Department for International Development.
As cabinet secretary, Sir Mark advised the PM on implementing policy and the conduct of government.
A career diplomat, he served as Ambassador to Afghanistan during a 20-year career in the Foreign Office, he took over as cabinet secretary at short notice following Sir Jeremy Heywood’s death in November 2018.
He had previously worked alongside former PM Mrs May as the most senior civil servant in the Home Office.

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