Rishi Sunak has been widely condemned for making a jibe about the Labour leader’s position on trans issues while the mother of murdered teen Brianna Ghey was in the House of Commons.

Sir Keir Starmer said the Conservative leader position was shameful, and accused him of “parading as a man of integrity when he’s got absolutely no responsibility".

Former first minister Nicola Sturgeon also criticised Mr Sunak, but she said that had Esther Ghey not been in Parliament then "no-one (including Keir Starmer) would have batted an eyelid".

Scarlett Jenkinson and Eddie Ratcliffe were both 15 when they attacked Brianna, 16, with a hunting knife in 2023.

Last week, the teenage pair were sentenced to life in prison for what the judge said was an “exceptionally brutal” killing partly motivated by Brianna's transgender identity.

READ MORE: Brianna Ghey: Killers of trans teenager to be named at sentencing

Opening Prime Minister’s Questions, Sir Keir praised Ms Ghey, who is campaigning for tougher sanctions on social media.

He said: “This week the unwavering bravery of Brianna Ghey’s mother Esther has touched us all. As a father, I can’t even imagine the pain that she is going through and I am glad that she is with us in the gallery here today.”

The Herald: Brianna Ghey was stabbed to death

Sir Keir then raised Mr Sunak’s £1,000 bet with TV host Piers Morgan about his Rwanda policy.

“A year ago, the Prime Minister promised to bring NHS waiting lists down. Isn’t he glad he didn’t bet a grand on it?” he asked.

Mr Sunak replied: “At least I stand by my commitments. He is so indecisive, the only bet he would make is an each-way bet.”

Replying, the Labour leader said: “He says he stands by his commitments. He once insisted if he missed his promises, these are the words he used, ‘I am the Prime Minister,’ and then he said ‘it is on me personally’.

“Today we learn from his own officials that he is the blocker to any deal to end the doctors’ strikes and every time he is asked he blames everyone else. So, what exactly did he mean when he said it is on him personally if he doesn’t meet his promise?”

The Prime Minister replied: “We are bringing the waiting lists down for the longest waiters and making progress, but it is a bit rich to hear about promises from someone who has broken every single promise he was elected on.

“I think I have counted almost 30 in the last year. Pensions, planning, peerages, public sector pay, tuition fees, childcare, second referendums, defining a woman, although in fairness that was only 99% of a u-turn.

“The list goes on but the theme is the same, it is empty words, broken promises and absolutely no plan.”

A visibly shocked Sir Keir hit out at Mr Sunak: “Of all the weeks to say that, when Brianna’s mother is in this chamber. Shame.

“Parading as a man of integrity when he’s got absolutely no responsibility.”

He added: “I think the role of the Prime Minister is to ensure that every single citizen in this country feels safe and respected, it’s a shame that the Prime Minister doesn’t share that.”

READ MORE: Brianna Ghey’s mother says child online safety laws should be ‘more drastic’

Later on, Labour MP Liz Twist asked Mr Sunak to apologise for his “insensitive” comment.

The Prime Minister ignored the question but then at the end of the session paid tribute to Ms Ghey.

“Could I just say also to Brianna Ghey's mum who is here, as I've said earlier this week, what happened was an unspeakable and shocking tragedy, and as I said earlier this week in the face of that, for her mother to demonstrate the compassion and empathy that she did last weekend, I thought demonstrated the very best of humanity in the face of seeing the very worst of humanity, and she deserves all our admiration and praise for that.”

Ms Sturgeon took to X, the site formerly Twitter, saying the comment from Mr Sunak was "truly terrible."

She added: "But let’s not kid ourselves - had Brianna’s mum not been there today, no-one (including Keir Starmer) would have batted an eyelid.

"It’s not good enough to stand against transphobia only when the mother of a murdered trans girl might be listening. It needs to be done all of the time."

The Scottish Greens described Mr Sunak's remark as "hateful".

Maggie Chapman, the party’s equalities spokesperson, said: These are disgraceful comments that would have been totally inappropriate at any time, but to say it today of all days and double down on it has shown a totally callous disregard for the impact of his words.

“Across the country, there are trans people who are hurting, and who are feeling

anxious and scared, and the most powerful politician in the UK is treating their lives and their wellbeing as a punchline. "

In the Commons, the SNP MP Hannah Bardell raised a point of order asking for Mr Sunak to come back to the Commons to apologise for making a "transphobic joke".

Deputy Speaker Dame Eleanor Laing said she could not compel Mr Sunak to apologise, but advised MPs that "when a tragedy has occurred we ought to show sympathy and understanding and not always make political points".

The Prime Minister's Press Secretary said it was "legitimate" to question Sir Keir's position on transgender issues.

Asked if the comment was transphobic, they said: "I don't accept that at all."

Kemi Badenoch, the Equalities Minister hit out at Sir Keir, accusing him of trying to weaponise trans issues.

She tweeted: "Every murder is a tragedy. None should be trivialised by political point-scoring. As a mother, I can imagine the trauma that Esther Ghey has endured. It was shameful of Starmer to link his own inability to be clear on the matter of sex and gender directly to her grief.

"As Minister for Women and Equalities I've done all I can to ensure we have take the heat out of the debate on LGBT issues while being clear about our beliefs and principles. Keir Starmer’s behaviour today shows Labour are happy to weaponise this issue when it suits them."