Lord Kerr Accuses Michael Gove Of "Telling A Lie" Over Leaked Brexit Documents

28 August 2019, 14:46 | Updated: 28 August 2019, 14:49

Lord Kerr has claimed Michael Gove "told a lie" for claiming a leaked Brexit document was written before Boris Johnson took over as prime minister.

The former Ambassador to the US and the EU was speaking about the Operation Yellowhammer papers, which were leaked in August and claimed there would be a three-month "meltdown" of delays at ports and food and medicine shortages.

Michael Gove, the Cabinet Minister in charge of no deal planning, claimed the papers had been written in July under Theresa May.

However, former Chancellor Phillip Hammond said the papers were dated August 2019, meaning they would not have been available to anyone who was not in the current administration.

Speaking to James O'Brien, Lord Kerr said: In my 26 years I never told a lie in public service.

"It's a mistake to tell a lie, because you tend to be found out and then the public won't trust you again.

"But when Mr Gove said that the document that was leaked was a July document dating from the old government he knew he was telling a lie and one shouldn't do that."

Lord Kerr has accused Michael Gove of "telling a lie" over leaked Brexit papers
Lord Kerr has accused Michael Gove of "telling a lie" over leaked Brexit papers. Picture: LBC

Lord Kerr was reacting to the news that Mr Johnson had asked the Queen to suspend Parliament shortly after it returns from summer recess, cutting the time MPs have to pass laws to stop a no deal Brexit.

"It looks like we're going to be sent away for another five weeks. I think the reason for that is so we cannot probe what no deal means.

"We have had some indication of what no deal means in the leaked papers by which the government lied saying they were July papers and the old papers."

"They revealed it was going to be very unpleasant and i think they don't that to be scrutinised. Mr Johnson has had precisely 24 hours of parliamentary scrutiny since he became prime minister and now he wants to have one week and not have to see us again until the second half of October."