RISHI Sunak is continuing Tory attempts to “save” the UK by keeping a dedicated Cabinet committee for overseeing Union strategy, with Michael Gove returning to play a key role.

The committee was first set up by Boris Johnson in 2021 as a replacement for his chaotic Number 10 “Union Unit”, which lost two leaders in the space of two weeks.

An updated list of Cabinet committees published last week has confirmed there will be a team of ministers dedicated to considering “matters relating to the Union of the United Kingdom”.

Headed by the Prime Minister, there are also two deputy chairs – including Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities and Minister for Intergovernmental Relations, a position held by Gove.

READ MORE: New standards commissioner gives damning verdict on Westminster's reputation

The other is the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, a post held by Oliver Dowden, who previously quit as the Tory chairman after the party suffered crushing by-election defeats under Boris Johnson.

Others on the committee will include the Scottish Secretary, currently Alister Jack, the Northern Ireland Secretary, a post held by Chris Heaton-Harris and the Welsh Secretary David Davies, together with the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, John Glen.

During his leadership campaign, Sunak pledged to relaunch the “Union Unit” with a full team of Number 10 staff as part of a plan to beat the SNP and lead the “most active UK Government in Scotland” for decades.

The unit was established by Johnson but was quickly replaced by the Union committee after it lost two leaders in two weeks.

First to go was former Tory MP Luke Graham, who was fired by Johnson – with his replacement, former Vote Leave veteran Oliver Lewis then stepping down just two weeks later.

Gove headed the reformed Union strategy committee but was sacked by Johnson in July for “disloyalty” after he told the prime minister to quit in the face of a wave of ministerial resignations.

The Sunday National asked Downing Street to clarify if there are any plans for reforming any other kind of “Union Unit” in addition to the cabinet committee but did not receive a response.

SNP deputy Westminster leader Kirsten Oswald MP said: “Westminster control has resulted in decades of decline and the Tory hard Brexit is making that decline faster and deeper, causing untold economic harm to Scotland’s people, businesses and future prosperity.

“Meanwhile, nations of a similar size to Scotland are outperforming the UK on a whole range of measures.”

She added: “Successive Tory prime ministers have persevered with this union unit sham. A parade of characters have taken a brief spin through its revolving door – at an ever-increasing cost to the taxpayer – leaving behind more broken promises, more attacks on the powers of the Scottish Parliament and the continued blocking of a democratically-mandated independence referendum.

“People in Scotland have already voted for the right to decide what sort of country we should be, and no amount of Tory Union Unit tinkering can change that.”