Boris Johnson wished to drop lockdown leak inquiry to keep away from upsetting fiancée, Cummings says

2021-04-24 02:05:59

Boris Johnson has sensationally been accused by Dominic Cummings of missing “competence and integrity”, because the prime minister’s former most senior adviser lashed out after being accused of leaking by Downing Avenue.

In a publish on his weblog, Mr Cummings made the explosive allegation – denied by No 10 – that the prime minister had made a “mad” and “unethical” proposal to close down a leak inquiry to keep away from annoying his fiancee Carrie Symonds after certainly one of her pals was implicated.

Mr Cummings, who resigned from 10 Downing Avenue in November amid escalating tensions inside Mr Johnson’s febrile interior circle, mentioned that the PM’s try and get Tory donors to pay for the redecoration of his flat was “presumably unlawful”.

He claimed that Mr Johnson had authorised members of his group to model him a leaker, regardless of figuring out it to be unfaithful.

And he mentioned he was able to reply questions in full about his dealings along with his former boss in a televised listening to of a parliamentary inquiry into the dealing with of the Covid pandemic on 26 Could.

“It’s unhappy to see the PM and his workplace fall to date under the requirements of competence and integrity the nation deserves,” wrote the previous Vote Go away supremo.

However Mr Johnson performed down the importance of the row, telling LBC radio: “I don’t assume folks give a monkey’s about this subject. What they care about is what had been we doing to guard the well being of the British public and that’s what I care about.”

In the meantime, the prime minister was accused by the SNP chief in Westminster Ian Blackford of failing to honour a promise to parliament, after Downing Avenue launched a press release summarising his contacts with inventor James Dyson, slightly than the messages themselves.

Mr Blackford referred to as for an unbiased public inquiry into “the Tory sleaze scandal and the accusations of privileged entry, impropriety and potential illegality”, and wrote to cupboard secretary Simon Case urging him to safe Mr Johnson’s private communications to make sure they don’t seem to be deleted or tampered with.

Former Tory chief William Hague mentioned that Mr Cummings was “clearly making an attempt to do as a lot harm to the prime minister as potential”.

Lord Hague advised Instances Radio: “If all of this stuff had been true, they might be damaging to anyone, together with a major minister.”

Mr Cummings’s devastating intervention was prompted by claims, briefed to sympathetic papers by a Downing Avenue supply, that the PM suspected his “bitter” former adviser of being the supply of a string of damaging leaks, together with of textual content message exchanges with Dyson.

He flatly denied the allegation, providing at hand his telephone over to Mr Case for examination as a part of the leak inquiry launched on Thursday and difficult the PM to do the identical.

And he mentioned that Mr Case had already cleared him of the so-called “chatty rat” leak in October final yr which pressured the second Covid lockdown to be introduced ahead.

Mr Cummings dramatically claimed that Mr Johnson had thought of ditching a probe into that leak after Mr Case mentioned that proof pointed in the direction of the workplace of presidency adviser Henry Newman, an in depth good friend of Ms Symonds.

“The PM was very upset about this,” wrote Mr Cummings. “He mentioned to me afterwards, ‘If Newman is confirmed because the leaker then I must hearth him, and this may trigger me very critical issues with Carrie as they’re greatest pals … [pause] maybe we might get the cupboard secretary to cease the leak inquiry?’

“I advised him that this was ‘mad’ and completely unethical.”

Mr Cummings mentioned that authorities officers would verify underneath oath to any inquiry that he had inspired Mr Case to proceed with the probe.

And he mentioned that he had warned Mr Johnson that his plan secretly to make use of donors’ cash to pay for the seemingly six-figure price of refurbishing the 11 Downing Avenue flat was “unethical, silly, presumably unlawful and nearly definitely broke the foundations on correct disclosure of political donations”.

The federal government at present introduced that Mr Johnson had personally coated the price of decorations past the £30,000 budgeted yearly for upkeep from the general public purse.

And Downing Avenue issued a press release to say that in relation to the flat, “always, the federal government and ministers have acted in accordance with the suitable codes of conduct and electoral regulation”.

A spokesperson additionally insisted that the PM had “by no means interfered in a authorities leak inquiry”.

Labour deputy chief Angela Rayner mentioned: “The federal government has spent the final 24 hours lurching between cover-ups and cock-ups.

“Labour is specializing in jobs, crime and the NHS, whereas the Conservatives are combating one another like rats in a sack and slipping deeper and deeper into the mire of sleaze. 

“It reveals breathtaking contempt for the nation.”

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