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13th Apr 2022

Tory MP wants No 10 to get a bar so aides don’t have to carry suitcases of alcohol

Danny Jones

MP wants No 10 to get a bar

Fabricant suggested ‘the rules were not clear’ – despite being set by the PM

MP for Lichfield Michael Fabricant has called for No 10 to get a bar installed so they no longer have to smuggle booze into the building inside suitcases following the Partygate fines handed out on Monday.

Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live, the former Mid Staffordshire representative told host Nihal Arthanayake that, “in [his] view, there should just be a bar in Downing Street just as they have in the Palace of Westminster”.

This comes after both Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak were among those fined following the criminal investigation into numerous illegal parties held during lockdown between May and December 2020 when the country was under tight restrictions regarding social interaction.

Speaking to the BBC following the verdict, Fabricant angered educators and medical professionals across the country for suggesting that not only did the PM believe he was acting within the law but that he acted just “like many teachers and nurses who after a very long shift would go back to the staff room and have a quiet drink”.

As alluded to above, the Royal College of Nursing General Secretary and Chief Executive Pat Cullen sent an official complaint to Oliver Dowden over Fabricant’s comments, labelling them “demoralising and factually incorrect”.

She went on to add that the comparison was beyond unfair given their continuous efforts on the frontline, despite still being “understaffed, underpaid, overworked, exhausted burnt out and still holding it together”.

While insisting that he was not invited to any of the reported 15 illegal parties that took place during lockdown restrictions, Fabricant remarked that their actions were understandable given that smuggling booze in through suitcases is “the only way you could actually get alcohol into Downing Street”, adding, “it’s not very dignified.”

He continued to try and defend the PM and his colleagues’ actions by saying “the rules were not clear” – ie the same lockdown restrictions that Johnson himself created and imposed upon the public, with thousands being hit with fines anywhere between £60 and £10,000 for breaches of their own.

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