Sunday, September 26

Gordon Brown Condemns Greensill Investigation as Unsatisfactory | Greensill

Gordon Brown has criticized the official investigation into the Greensill case as unsatisfactory and lacking vital evidence that meant the government was not properly scrutinized for its actions.

The former prime minister’s comments come as Jeremy Heywood’s widow, a former high-ranking official who was heavily criticized in the investigation report, described the process as a parody created to scapegoat and distract her husband. attention to the events after his death.

Brown said the report was “so unsatisfactory” that he wanted its author, attorney Nigel Boardman, to be called in to publicly explain why “as a reviewer he did not interview key people, why he did not consider vital evidence from Lady Heywood and others. “. that made it clear that Jeremy Heywood was implementing the government policy decided by the ministers ”.

He said Boardman should also explain “why it appears to justify the current practice of commercial lobbying for financial gain by former ministers as acceptable and therefore has no proposals to regulate clear and unjustifiable conflicts of interest.” An investigation should look at how Boardman was appointed as a reviewer “given his association with those he was investigating,” he said.

Boris Johnson has already been accused of orchestrating a cover-up of the lobbying scandal after an official review lightly chided former Prime Minister David Cameron.

The report said Heywood was “primarily responsible” for businessman Lex Greensill securing a role in government during Cameron’s presidency. The former cabinet secretary “should have considered the issue of conflicts of interest,” since it should have been obvious that Greensill was building a company, Boardman found.

In a scathing response on Friday, Suzanne Heywood accused Boardman of repeatedly denying her late husband’s requests for representation after she approached the review in late April, only including it a week before publication.

“Last week they called me and Mr. Boardman read his findings to me. I tried to challenge him about his independence, to which he did not respond, so it has been a sham of the process, “he told BBC Radio 4’s Today program.

“They have been trying to trap my husband as far as I can see to divert attention from things that happened much later after his death. I am horrified that I have to be here to try to defend my husband against what has been a fabricated attack on him and an absolutely horrible process. “

She defended her husband’s original role on the grounds that the then-coalition government sought to prioritize supply chain financing, with which Greensill was familiar, as a means of helping small and medium-sized businesses. Greensill’s appointment was made with ministerial approval and he had come with a clean CV, he said.

The Cabinet Office has said the investigation process was fair. He said that all the people referred to in the report were treated on equivalent terms by the review team and that Lady Heywood had access to all relevant documents.

Boardman was appointed in April to carry out an independent investigation into government contracts and lobbying that involved several high-level conservative politicians, including Cameron, Chancellor Rishi Sunak, MP and former health secretary Matt Hancock, and par Francis. Maude.

After leaving government, Cameron became an advisor to Greensill Capital and lobbied ministers, including Sunak, for access to government-backed loans.

Critics have said that Boardman should not have been in charge of the investigation due to his close relationship with the government and the Conservative Party. He has been a non-executive director of the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and is a former Conservative party candidate.

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