Rishi Sunak, announced as the next Prime Minister, says he has “no plans” to hold an early general election.

Mr Sunak was speaking to Tory MPs behind closed doors after it was revealed he was the only leadership candidate to receive the backing of more than 100 of his parliamentary colleagues.

The next Prime Minister ruled out an early general election, reports suggest.

Senior Tory Simon Hoare told reporters: “He is actually going to hit the ground running. We have no time to lose.

“Certainly, he said that there will be no early general election.”

Rishi Sunak in profile

He added that Mr Sunak had warned of an “existential threat” facing the party, and that they could overcome it if they focused on “policies not personalities”.

Another Tory MP said Rishi Sunak’s message to the party was “we must unite or die and deliver for our country”.

The MP, who was in the private meeting where new leader Mr Sunak spoke, said his message was “we are united on all the key issues”.

Rishi Sunak wins race to become next Prime Minister

Mr Sunak, who failed to become Prime Minister after losing the last leadership contest to Liz Truss seven weeks ago, was the only Tory MP to receive the backing of more than 100 of his parliamentary colleagues.

The former Chancellor was initially opposed by Boris Johnson, who backed out of the leadership race over the weekend despite claiming to have received sufficient support from MPs to continue, and Penny Mordaunt, who was unable to gather the 100 backers needed to proceed in the contest.

Victory for Mr Sunak means the Tories are on to their third prime minister since they won the 2019 general election under Mr Johnson’s leadership.

Veteran Tory Sir Christopher Hope joined Labour in demanding a fresh general election, arguing it is the only solution for the next leader now the Conservative Party is “ungovernable”.

The MP for Christchurch in Dorset, which he held last time with a near-25,000 vote majority, told Today: “The best way they can get that respect is by winning a mandate with the people, and that’s why I think a general election is essentially the only answer, otherwise we’re just going to go from bad to worse.

“The party is ungovernable in the House of Commons and so we’re going to have continuing rebellions as we try to change policies and so on, and so I must say I’m very pessimistic, I’m very angry, and I feel that Boris has been let down once again and undermined by our parliamentary colleagues.”