Boris Johnson faces demands to reveal big money donors as refurb cash row rages

Boris Johnson faces demands to reveal his big money donors, as the row over who will fund the refurbishment of his Downing Street flat rages on.

Labour’s Angela Rayner has demanded the Prime Minister publish details of the ‘Leader’s Group’ – an exclusive clique open only to those who have donated £50,000 or more to the Tories.

It follows reports that the party was planning to accept “secret donor cash” to pay for a £200,000 luxury refurb of the PM’s home.

Three Tory peers understood to have been members of the group have also been linked to the wallpaper fund.

According to the Mail, Tory tycoon Lord Brownlow is said to have paid an estimated £60,000 to Tory HQ after the party had paid a similar sum via the Cabinet Office to help Mr Johnson and fiancée Carrie Symonds refit their apartment.

And the paper also reported claims that Lords Goldsmith and Bamford have both been tapped up to donate to the fund.

In a letter to Conservative Chair Amanda Milling, seen by the Mirror, Labour’s deputy leader Angela Rayner noted all three Tory Peers have been members of the Leader’s Group.

The PM faces a running row over cash to pay for his new wallpaper
The PM faces a running row over cash to pay for his new wallpaper

Before erasing any mention of the group from their website, the Conservatives boasted members of the Leader’s Group were “invited to “join the Leader and other senior figures from the Conservative Party at dinners, post-PMQ lunches, drinks receptions, election result events and important campaign launches”.

Lists of attendees used to be published quarterly, but that stopped in 2018. The Party promised to release the register last June, but has yet to do so.

said: “Last week the Electoral Commission revealed the Conservative party had received £5m in donations in the final three months of 2020 alone, including 38 individual donations of at least £50,000.

“With this in mind, and nine months having passed since your last statement, can you please update me on when exactly we might see a new register published?”

A Conservative Party spokesperson said: “Conservative Party funds are not being used to pay for any refurbishment to the Downing Street estate.

“The Leader’s Group will be published in due course. All reportable donations to the Conservative Party are correctly declared to the Electoral Commission, published by them and comply fully with the law.

“Fundraising is a legitimate part of the democratic process. The alternative is taxpayer-funding of political campaigning, which would mean less money for frontline services like schools and hospitals – or being in the pocket of the trade unions, like the Labour Party.”


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