Minister would not have made Savile slur but 'PM was right to examine Starmer's record'

8 February 2022, 09:01 | Updated: 8 February 2022, 09:03

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

Government Minister Chris Philp says he would not have made Boris Johnson's Savile jibe at Sir Keir Starmer.

Speaking to LBC's Nick Ferrari at Breakfast the Technology Minister was pressed if he would have made those comments against the Labour leader.

The conversation comes after the Labour leader was filmed being bundled into the back of a police car after being confronted by protesters shouting "traitor" and "Jimmy Savile" at him.

Nick Ferrari pressed the Minister asked if he would have made the same comments.

Last week, Prime Minister Boris Johnson, made a discredited claim that Sir Keir personally failed to prosecute Savile, a prolific sex offender, while he was Director of Public Prosecutions.

Mr Philp told LBC "until you stand in someone's shoes you shouldn't speculate about what you would or would not say."

But, Nick again pressed him. Asking, "you must know if you would or would not make the comments?"

Watch: Boris Johnson's Savile insult 'not to blame for Sir Keir mobbing' minister insists

The Minister replied that he was "not sure" he would have made the comments "in that context" but then added it was right to try to highlight someone's "general track record in public office."

At least six Conservatives including a former Cabinet minister joined MPs from across the political spectrum in linking the harassment to the baseless claim Mr Johnson made while under pressure over the partygate scandal.

Coming under renewed criticism, Mr Johnson tweeted the "behaviour directed" at the Labour leader was "absolutely disgraceful" but did not address the nature of the abuse.

Watch: 'Aggressive, ferocious and hostile': David Lammy slams anti-vax mob who ambushed Sir Keir

Scotland Yard said two arrests were made after there were clashes between police and protesters after officers escorted Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer to safety.

A Metropolitan Police statement said: "Shortly after 5.10pm on Monday, February 7, a man who had been surrounded by a group of protesters near to New Scotland Yard, was taken away from the scene by a police car.

"A man and a woman were arrested at the scene for assault of an emergency worker after a traffic cone was thrown at a police officer.

"They have been taken into custody."

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