The British Election Commission has launched an official investigation into the luxurious renovation of the official residence of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. According to the regulator, there are “reasonable grounds to suspect a breach or violations”.
This case raised the mood in the UK for days. Former chief advisor Dominic Cummings said on Friday that the prime minister planned last year to secretly use donor funds for the renovation work. Cummings then described it as “immoral, stupid and possibly illegal”. Leaked emails say some of the funding has gone through Lord Brownlow, a Conservative donor.
Johnson is allowed to spend 30,000 pounds (34,000 euros) a year of public money at his official residence at 11 Downing Street, and he himself pays extra expenses, which would have been significant in this case. British media have reported that the renovations may cost around 200,000 pounds (230,000 euros).
The prime minister’s fiancée, Carrie Symonds, is said to have led the renovation. She reportedly hated the style of former Prime Minister Theresa May, one of Johnson’s rivals in the party. As far as is known, he has not invested any money of his own in official residence.
Ministers insist Johnson paid the costs of the renovation himself, but it remains unclear exactly how the financing was arranged. A spokesman for the prime minister did not previously want to say whether there was a loan. The prime minister had to ditch it.
Johnson also faced other riots just over a week before the regional elections. British media wrote on the basis of anonymous sources that Johnson would have been shouting last year out of frustration that he would rather see a “pile of corpses” than impose a lockdown.
Johnson was asked by the opposition for a clarification in Parliament on Wednesday. The prime minister insisted he never spoke such terms and challenged opposition leader Keir Starmer to present evidence. Johnson also confirmed that he paid for the renovation of his home himself, while adhering to our Code of Conduct.
Also see: Kings Watcher: “William and Kate want to forgive Harry.”
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