Tory peer Michelle Mone tried to ‘bully’ officials into awarding £200million of PPE contracts to a firm she later got millions from, it is claimed.
The bra tycoon was branded a ‘right pain in the a***’ by then-Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove for her hard sell techniques at the start of the pandemic, The Sunday Times reported.
Baroness Mone, 51, recommended PPE Medpro – which her husband Douglas Barrowman was a director of – via the government’s ‘fast track’ scheme, the paper said. She reportedly then lobbied Mr Gove and procurement minister Lord Agnew on their personal emails.
‘She was rude, abrasive and bullying,’ a Whitehall source told the paper. ‘Her hectoring tone was very irritating.’
Mr Barrowman was reportedly paid £65million by PPE Medpro – and is alleged to have paid his then-fiancée and her children nearly £29million via a secret offshore trust.
Baroness Mone faces a Lords standards inquiry, while the National Crime Agency investigates PPE Medpro.
She originally denied any link with the company, and ‘completely refutes’ allegations of wrongdoing. ‘I was asked to help at a time of national emergency,’ she added. ‘I declared all necessary interests and have done nothing wrong.’ Her lawyer said she can’t comment, and ‘is under no duty’ to. Mr Barrowman and PPE Medpro’s lawyer added: ‘There is much inaccuracy in the portrayal of the alleged “facts” and a number of them are completely wrong.’
Boris Johnson inquired about Covid test for dog, Dilyn
Boris Johnson asked the UK’s chief medical officer if his dog Dilyn needed a Covid test as he feared they were both infected in March 2020, Matt Hancock’s diaries claim. At the time fewer than 75,000 people a week were being tested. Prof Chris Whitty reportedly said: ‘I don’t know if the human antibody test would be suitable.’
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