UK's Johnson paid for apartment refurbishment himself, minister says

Lord Barwell The Cummings war could be 'extremely destabilising'

Dominic Cummings, who was Johnson's key adviser on the Brexit campaign and helped him to win an election in 2019 before a bust-up past year, said on Friday that Johnson wanted to donors to secretly pay for the renovation and he told the prime minister the plans were "unethical, foolish, possibly illegal". On Friday, Johnson's office said the PM did not interfere in a government leak inquiry.

A newspaper report that British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that he would rather bodies piled "high in their thousands" than order a third lockdown is not true, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said on Monday.

"What I agree with is that the prime minister has met the costs, that everything will be declared in line (with the rules) including for tax purposes", she said. "Frankly, it stinks", he told BBC news.

MPs are expected to press him on the extent of the former prime minister's activities on behalf of the failed finance company following the disclosure he used his contacts to directly approach Chancellor Rishi Sunak, Health Secretary Matt Hancock and the deputy governor of the Bank of England.

"We need to know the full amount that was spent and we need to know who paid for the work in the first place, who the Prime Minister now proposes to reimburse", the Labour MP told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme.

She declined to comment when asked whether a donor initially paid for the renovation and Johnson then repaid the donor.

"All the details will be given out in line with the rules", Ms Truss added.

Mr Case's office argues that the inquiry into who leaked plans for a second national lockdown in October is ongoing and nobody has been exonerated.

"These noises off are simply not helpful, they are not contributing to a positive future and they don't reflect what is actually going on in Downing Street".

He said, "You've got the former most senior adviser to the prime minister saying he's fallen well below the standards of integrity that are needed for the office of the prime minister".

Labour's shadow home office minister Jess Phillips described the public feud between Mr Johnson and Mr Cummings as "scrapping between two very powerful men who seem more interested in who's lying about what and who's leaking what than about the substance of the issue".

Labour has also called for a new independent commission to be launched, on ethics and standards in government.

© 2021 Getty Images LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 21: UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson leaves 10 Downing Street to attend the weekly Prime Ministers Questions in Parliament on April 21, 2021 in London, England.

But she added there was also a need for an independent inquiry.

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