Call for inquiry into Boris Johnson’s Chequers dinner with billionaire relative

Boris Johnson is facing a potential inquiry into whether he breached the ministerial code by using Chequers for a dinner with the BBC chairman and a billionaire relative who

backed a loan. The Liberal Democrats have written to cabinet secretary Simon Case asking him to investigate whether the then-prime minister discussed his own financial

affairs at the grace-and-favour state mansion. Mr Johnson used Chequers to host a dinner with BBC chair Richard Sharp and his distant Canadian cousin Sam Blyth – the

guarantor for a credit facility of up to £800,000 – in May 2021. Under the ministerial code, ministers can only use official residences for personal activities if it is paid

for at their own expense. Lib Dem chief whip Wendy Chamberlain has asked Mr Case to launch and “urgent” investigation into “serious concerns about this use of Chequers” and

establish whether the £800,000 credit line was discussed. “We need urgent clarity over whether Johnson’s used Chequers to discuss his own personal financial affairs, and if

so whether he paid the expenses himself,” she said. “Failure to do so would be a potential breach of the ministerial code and an inexcusable misuse of taxpayers’ money.” The

senior MP added: “Boris Johnson’s whole premiership was tarnished by sleaze and scandal. The British people deserve to know whether Johnson used public money to secure his own

personal piggy bank.” Mr Johnson has dismissed the furore as a “load of complete nonsense” – saying he was “ding-dang sure” that the BBC chairman had no knowledge of his

personal finances.