David Cameron: Government will investigate former PM's Greensill lobbying

12 April 2021, 12:38 | Updated: 12 April 2021, 13:25

An independent investigation will be carried out to look into David Cameron's efforts to lobby Greensill Capital, Downing Street sources have claimed
An independent investigation will be carried out to look into David Cameron's efforts to lobby Greensill Capital, Downing Street sources have claimed. Picture: PA

By Kate Buck

An independent investigation will be carried out into David Cameron's efforts to lobby Greensill Capital, Downing Street has confirmed.

The former PM has faced criticism after it emerged Mr Cameron privately lobbied ministers, including with texts to Chancellor Rishi Sunak, to win access to an emergency coronavirus loan scheme for his employer, financier Lex Greensill.

The investigation will be carried out by Nigel Boardman, a partner at Slaughter and May, who is also a board member of the Department for Business, which has lead responsibly for government relations with business.

According to LBC Westminster Correspondent Ben Kentish, No10 is currently unable to say whether he’ll step down from this role while the inquiry is carried out.

It was later reported Mr Cameron had arranged a "private drink" between Health Secretary Matt Hancock and Mr Greensill to discuss a payment scheme later rolled out in the NHS.

The former prime minister - who was in Downing Street from 2010 to 2016 - said in a statement: "In my representations to Government, I was breaking no codes of conduct and no government rules."

He said that "ultimately" the outcome of his efforts to get Greensill's proposals included in the Government's Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF) was that "they were not taken up".

"So, I complied with the rules and my interventions did not lead to a change in the Government's approach to the CCFF," he added.

"However, I have reflected on this at length. There are important lessons to be learnt.

"As a former prime minister, I accept that communications with government need to be done through only the most formal of channels, so there can be no room for misinterpretation."

More to follow...