MP Nadhim Zahawi's successor as Tory Party Chair is named - The Leamington Observer

MP Nadhim Zahawi's successor as Tory Party Chair is named

Leamington Editorial 7th Feb, 2023   0

MP NADHIM Zahawi’s successor as Conservative Party Chair has been named.

Greg Hands, former trade minister and MP for Chelsea and Fulham, will replace the Stratford MP in the Cabinet role after Mr Zahawi was sacked by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak for breaching the ministerial code over his tax affairs.

Mr Hands’ appointment comes as Mr Sunak undertook a mini-reshuffle of his Cabinet today (Tuesday) in a bid to boost the Tory party’s ratings.

The PM has also broken up the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy into separate ministries- creating a new energy department and merging trade into business.

Business secretary Grant Shapps has been moved to become the new energy and net zero secretary, while Kemi Badenoch is promoted to business and trade secretary.

Mr Sunak has also split the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport department. Michelle Donelan has a new role as science and technology secretary, while Lucy Frazer replaces her as culture secretary.

However, deputy PM Dominic Raab has survived the Cabinet shake-up despite growing pressure for him to stand down as the investigation into bullying allegations takes place.

Mr Zahawi’s sacking as Tory Party Chairman followed an investigation by the PM’s ethics adviser Sir Laurie Magnus after it emerged the 55-year-old had paid a seven-figure settlement, including a penalty, to HMRC for tax avoidance.

Sir Laurie found Mr Zahawi had been in breach of the ministerial code on seven occasions by failing to declare his tax affairs and denying media reports he was under investigation by HMRC.

This included not declaring he was being investigated by the tax body when he was appointed chancellor by Boris Johnson.

The investigation took six days to complete.

Stratford constituents have since been calling for Mr Zahawi to step down as their MP as they no longer want him representing them in Westminster.

Vikki Parker, co-ordinator for campaign group Stratford-on-Avon Compass, said: “Nadhim Zahawi is an absentee MP. I feel he does little locally and this tax fiasco is yet another example of the sleaze, corruption and dishonesty that continues to taint the Conservative party.

“If he isn’t fit to be the Conservative Party Chair, he isn’t fit to be an MP.”


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