Lies, Falsehoods and Misrepresentations from Boris Johnson to Keir Starmer

“It is actually a long-established process across multiple administrations that former Ministers are supported with legal representation after they have left office to deal with matters that relate to their time in office”

PM Rishi Sunak, Prime Minister’s Questions

Facts

At PMQs, Labour MP Karl Turner, asked Prime Minister Rishi Sunak why the British public was being forced to pay Boris Johnson’s Partygate legal fees. 

PM Sunak sought to justify the decision by stating that there is a precedent for supporting former ministers with legal representation. He said it was a “long established process across multiple administrations”

The government has not been able to name a single example of a former minister receiving taxpayer-funded legal support for a parliamentary inquiry.

Karl Turner wrote to the cabinet secretary, Simon Case, asking Rishi Sunak to correct the record. He has not done so. 

Verdict

Rishi Sunak has so far failed to provide evidence to support his statement  that payment for legal representation is “actually a long established process across multiple administrations that former Ministers are supported with legal representation after they have left office to deal with matters that relate to their time in office.”

According to the Ministerial Code, “It is of paramount importance that Ministers give accurate and truthful information to Parliament, correcting any inadvertent error at the earliest opportunity.  Ministers who knowingly mislead Parliament will be expected to offer their resignation to the Prime Minister.”

We emailed Rishi Sunak’s office and Downing Street offering them the chance to respond. The email was received, but no reply. 

Published 28 Jun 2024
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