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Boris Johnson has come under pressure from some Conservative MPs to scrap or at least delay the increase to regain public support as he awaits the findings of police inquiries into claims of Downing Street parties held when the country was supposed to be abiding by lockdown measures. 

Critics, including former minister David Davis, are also pressuring the Prime Minister to abandon the national insurance plans due to the immense financial pressures many households are already facing amid inflationary cost increases and the imminent increase in the energy price cap. 

However, on Friday, a spokesperson for the Prime Minister said, “The Prime Minister and Chancellor are fully committed to introducing the health and social care levy in April.

We’ve spoken before about why we are doing that – in order to give the NHS the funds it needs to tackle the backlog that has built up, as well as tackling the long-term issue of social care.”

National insurance contributions, paid by employers and employees in the UK, are scheduled to increase by 1.25 percentage points at the start of the new tax year in April. The tax increase is a manifesto-breaking move by the Conservative party, aimed at raising £12 billion to support NHS funding amid the pandemic. 

However, former minister David Davis, amongst others, has urged the government to abandon its plans because of the financial pressure households are already facing amid inflationary cost increases and the imminent increase in the energy price cap. 

Speaking on Monday on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Davis said, “It was a judgment made on, frankly, quite a lot of wrong data.” 

They didn’t know at the time that by April we would have the highest inflation rate in 30 years, they didn’t know that interest rates would be going up, council tax would be going up, the fuel price is about to jump by £700 a year for the average family. Therefore they didn’t know quite what pressure there would be on ordinary people.”

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