Boris Johnson’s replacement as prime minister must be done “properly and professionally but quickly”, Education Secretary James Cleverley has told Sky News.

But the cabinet minister ruled himself out as a prime ministerial candidate following Johnson’s resignation effectively launched the Conservative Party leadership race.

He also took issue with Sir John Major’s idea of ​​skipping a grassroots vote, stressing the need to have a leader who would be a good campaigner, which Theresa May, who was crowned in the top job, was not.

Mr Cleverley said: “I’m focusing on the future and the government is focusing on the future, and rightly so, and the future is that we get a new prime minister and a government team very soon, and in the meantime we get on with the British the people

“He remains prime minister until a new prime minister is found. This is how our system works.

“Everybody recognizes the incentive to do this properly and professionally but quickly so that we can get some certainty and so that the new prime minister, whoever it is, can build his team and make sure that they continue to focus on what really important is the people of this country.”

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