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Mon, 6 April 2020

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Boris Johnson urged to launch investigation into Dominic Cummings after Sajid Javid aide sacking

Boris Johnson urged to launch investigation into Dominic Cummings after Sajid Javid aide sacking
3 min read

Boris Johnson has been told to launch an investigation into the sacking of one of Sajid Javid's top advisers by Dominic Cummings.


MPs and former senior civil servants have demanded an "urgent inquiry" into the circumstances surrounding Sonia Khan's dismissal on Thursday night.

Ms Khan - a former advisor to Philip Hammond - received a police escort out of Number 10 after Dominic Cummings demanded to see her phone and accused her of being in contact with another former aide who had also worked for the ex-Chancellor.

But the move was slammed by MPs, including former attorney general Dominic Grieve who called for a Cabinet Office investigation into Mr Cummings's actions.

He told The Observer: “If the facts are correct Mr Cummings’s behaviour in inviting the police into what at most could only have been an employment issue is deeply troubling.

"It was wrong of the police to get involved.”

Labour MP Yvette Cooper, added: “Government advisers must not abuse their power by drawing the police into heavy- handed political stunts. This needs to be reviewed by the cabinet secretary and the Metropolitan police straight away.”

Meanwhile, fellow Labour MP Stephen Doughty said he would be asking Cabinet Secretary Sir Mark Sedwill and Met Commissioner Cressida Dick to "explain urgently" if any protocols had been broken during the sacking.

An unreprentantMr Cummings refused to apologise for his handling of the sacking during a meeting with special advisers on Friday, telling them: "If you don't like how I run things, there's the door. Fuck off."

Mr Javid, who had known nothing about Ms Khan's dismisisal in advance, confronted the Prime Minister to express his anger on Friday.

Former Cabinet Secretary Lord Turnbull urged Mr Johnson to explain why his top aide had been given the authority to sack advisers belonging to other departments as he accused Mr Cummings of creating a "mantle of fear".

He said: "Getting one of the armed police to escort an adviser out of Downing Street is deeply offensive and is part of Cummings’s mantle of fear"

Meanwhile, former senior Met police chief Del Babu accussed the top Downing Street strategist of a "shocking abuse of armed officers".

"It's appalling," he told the paper.

"The police should be asking questions of Cummings, asking questions of the prime minister around an abuse of process. At a time when we should be proud of having BAME women at the heart of government this sends out a very wrong signal of how people are valued.

“I would expect the cabinet secretary Mark Sedwill to conduct an inquiry and I would expect the police to conduct an inquiry about individuals in No 10 utilising police officers in a very inappropriate way.”

On Friday night a Metropolitan Police spokesperson confirmed the incident, but defended the actions of their officers, saying it was "standard practice" for guest to be escorted from Number 10.

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