(LONDON) — Rishi Sunak has been chosen as the new U.K. prime minister less than a week after Liz Truss stepped down from the position after just six weeks in office.
Sunak was chief secretary to the Treasury from 2019 to 2020 and a member of Parliament from Richmond.
The 42-year-old is the first person of color to serve as prime minister in U.K. history.
Penny Mourdant, the runner-up for the role, dropped out of the voting process — only among the 357 members of Parliament from the Conservative Party — to pave the way for Sunak to take over.
“These are unprecedented times,” Mourdant said in a statement announcing her withdrawal. “Despite the compressed timetable for the leadership contest it is clear that colleagues feel we need certainty today. They have taken this decision in good faith for the good of the country.”
Mourdant added, “This decision is an historic one and shows, once again, the diversity and talent of our party. Rishi has my full support.”
Besides Mourdant and Sunak, the other top contender speculated to take over for Truss was Boris Johnson — the very man who resigned to pave the way for Truss.
Johnson, however, announced he was dropping out of the race on Sunday.
Truss’ short time as prime minister, the shortest in history, came about as a complete rebuke of her economic plan for the country. She eventually rolled back most of her changes, but her top advisers resigned en masse and she finally stepped down on Thursday.
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