Boris Johnson tries to suppress ethics report about ‘bullying’ senior minister

November 21, 2020 

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is facing allegations that he told a government watchdog to tone down a report that found one of his senior ministers had bullied her staff, according to reports.

An independent probe had found that Home Secretary Priti Patel had broken ministerial conduct by swearing and shouting at her staff, but Johnson tried to pressure the report’s author, Alex Allan, to make the report’s findings “palatable,” sources told the BBC.

Allan, the government’s independent ethics advisor, resigned after Johnson threw his support behind Patel, ignoring the findings of the report, according to the BBC.

“The prime minister has simply put aside the findings of a report … that she is a bully. You shouldn’t have bullies in government,” said David Normington, a former permanent secretary in the Home Office, in an interview with the BBC.”The system depends on the prime minister standing up for standards in public life and taking action when a minister breaches those standards.”

Patel apologized on Friday, adding that “any upset I have caused was completely unintentional.”

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