Former RIBA president Angela Brady is leading calls for the revocation of the honorary fellowship awarded to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson by the institute.
Brady chaired the RIBA Honours Committee in 2011 when Johnson was given the fellowship in recognition of what was then described as his ‘enormous contribution’ to architecture as mayor of London.
During his eight-year tenure as mayor, Johnson was involved in several high profile architecture projects such as Thomas Heatherwick’s redesign of the London Routemaster buses, the ArcelorMittal Orbit tower, London's cycle sharing scheme and the Emirates Air Line cable car among others.
Several RIBA member-architects have supported the call for revoking the title following the adverse ruling by the British Supreme Court on the issue of Johnson’s decision to suspend Parliament for five weeks as the country moves towards its exit from the EU. The Supreme Court had termed the decision ‘unlawful’.
Several leading architects led by Walter Menteth, founder of London practice Walter Menteth Architects, have signed a letter demanding the revocation because Johnson’s actions have broken the RIBA code of professional conduct, bringing the institution into disrepute.
"Individual architects, the RIBA as its professional institute and the representatives of our collective professionalism subscribe to behaviour that is lawful, proper and befitting," says Menteth.
"The standard of this behaviour is codified and maintains our professionalism distinctively from civil society, and requires that integrity, probity and non-discrimination must be upheld.
“In our long history as a profession, no individual has or can be seen to be above those standards. When the public responsibility of professions and institutions is being tested, no benefit is to be had for democratic civil society by professions and institutions not sustaining the consistent application of those standards.
“I would hope RIBA Council will reconfirm the institute’s integrity and do what is fit and proper. From the multiple evidence, it seems to me, unequivocally, that it is only right that the institute revoke this honour.”