RISHI Sunak has promoted two close allies in the wake of Dominic Raab resigning from his twin roles in government over his “intimidating and aggressive” conduct.

Former Tory party chair Oliver Dowden becomes the new Deputy Prime Minister.

Mr Dowden, who is already Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Secretary of State in the Cabinet Office, ran Mr Sunak’s Tory leadership campaign last summer.

In a tweet, he said he was “deeply honoured” by the appointment.

Meanwhile junior defence minister Alex Chalk KC becomes the new Justice Secretary.

He was one of Mr Sunak’s biggest supporters for the leadership and attended the same elite private school as the Prime Minister, Winchester College.

A former solicitor general for England and Wales who has been a prisons minister, Mr Chalk takes on responsibility for prisons, courts and the controversial Bill of Rights plan.

He is the 11th Justice Secretary since the Conservatives came to power in 2010.

Both men were Remain voters, unlike Mr Sunak.

No 10 also said that Chloe Smith will cover as Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology while Michelle Donelan is on maternity leave.

It is a return to the frontbench for the Norwich North MP, who was work and pensions secretary during the brief tenure of Liz Truss.

When Mr Sunak replaced Ms Truss amid a period of acute political instability last October, he was careful to keep a number of her supporters in key posts.

Almost six months into the job, he now feels more confident in promoting his own loyalists.