Priti Patel’s ‘get out of jail free card’ should be taken away, Labour says

The Labour Party has called for the Home Secretary to be investigated by the Cabinet Office ‘immediately’ following reports from the Sunday Mirror that she has broken the ministerial code again.

Boris Johnson should take away Priti Patel’s “get out of jail free card”, Labour has said following allegations she brokered a meeting between a Tory billionaire donor and British Airways.

The Sunday Mirror found Ms Patel had breached the ministerial code as she arranged high level talks at Heathrow Airport’s Hilton Garden Inn without a Home Office official present – as rules dictate.

The hotel is part of a chain owned by Ms Patel’s friend Surinder Arora.

Angela Rayner MP, Labour’s Deputy Leader and Shadow Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, said: “The Home Secretary is a serial offender with no regard for the Ministerial Code.

“It’s time the Prime Minister took away her get out of jail free card.

Angela Rayner said Priti Patel has no regard for the ministerial code


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“This secret lobbying lunch would break the rules three times over. She has serious questions to answer and must be investigated by the Cabinet Secretary immediately.”

And Shadow Home Secretary, Nick Thomas-Symonds MP added: “Priti Patel once again has very serious questions to answer having previously broken the Ministerial Code by bullying her civil servants.

“The Home Secretary is so reckless about her duties that it seems she takes part in meetings behind closed doors and without an official present.

Priti Patel has previously broken rules on ministers’ behaviour


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“As always with the Tories, the rules never apply to them.”

The ministerial code states: “A private secretary or official should be present for all discussions relating to Government business.

“If a minister meets an external organisation or individual and finds themselves discussing official business without an official present – for example at a social occasion or on holiday – any significant content should be passed back to the department as soon as possible after the event.”

Health Secretary Sajid Javid has said his Cabinet colleague Priti Patel was doing “really well”.

Amid criticism of the Home Secretary’s performance, Mr Javid said: “It’s a really tough job, and she’s doing really well.

“There’s so many things that she has already done with the legislation that’s been put forward, but I also know as Home Secretary, you’ll also do a huge amount that never gets into the public eye because it’s not something you can ever talk about publicly.”

A spokesman for the Home Secretary said: “Details of all the Home Secretary’s relevant external meetings will be published in the usual way in accordance with the ministerial code.”

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