UK leader sacks party leader over tax allegations

LONDON – British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak on Sunday sacked the leader of his ruling Conservative Party for a “grave breach” of the Ministerial Code.

The pressure had built up Nadhim Zahawi under allegations he settled a multi-million dollar unpaid tax bill while he was in charge of the country’s Treasury Department.

In a letter to Zahawi, Sunak wrote that he was forced into action after promising early in his tenure that his government would have “integrity, professionalism and accountability at all levels”.

There was no immediate comment from Zahawi.

Zahawi, the founder of survey website YouGov, had admitted a dispute with tax authorities but argued his mistake was “negligent and not intentional”.

British media reported the settlement amounted to almost £5 million ($6.2 million).

Zahawi headed the UK Treasury from July to September 2022, in the final months of Boris Johnson’s tenure as Prime Minister. Sunak said the decision came at the end of an investigation into the party leader’s financial dealings by the government’s independent standards adviser.

Laurie Magnus’ report found that Zahawi had shown “insufficient respect” in public life for the ministerial code and the standards required “to be honest, open and a model leader through his own conduct”.

HMRC’s investigation into his affairs focused on the sale of around £27 million ($33.4 million) of shares in YouGov.

The investigation began in April 2021, but Zahawi did not explain it when he was appointed Chancellor of the Exchequer more than a year later.

The Magnus report found there should have had an understanding from the start that the matter was serious.

Zahawi previously served as vaccine minister during the first year of the coronavirus pandemic, followed by a nine-month stint as education minister.

Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, transcribed or redistributed without permission. UK leader sacks party leader over tax allegations

Sarah Y. Kim

InternetCloning is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Related Articles

Back to top button