Saturday 18 June 2022 02:31 AM Boris Johnson accused of trying to appoint wife Carrie to £100k taxpayer ... trends now
Boris Johnson was last night accused of trying to appoint Carrie Johnson to a top taxpayer-funded position while Foreign Secretary before he was blocked by colleagues who discovered they were having an affair.
The Prime Minister, who served as chief of the Foreign Office between 2016 and 2018, wanted to make his future wife his £100,000-a-year chief of staff before allies intervened, the Times reports.
Those close to Mr Johnson feared the move would have been a clear breach of ethical standards within one of the four great offices of state.
At the time, staffers learned of the Foreign Secretary and the-then Ms Symonds true relationship after a Tory MP allegedly walked in on them in a 'compromising position' in Mr Johnson's office at the start of 2018.
He was, at the time, still married to lawyer Marina Wheeler, his second wife of 25 years and mother to four of his children.
A source close to the-then Foreign Secretary and involved in the decision to block Ms Symond's appointment told the Times: 'It would have left [Boris] dangerously exposed'.
Appointing his then-mistress as Mr Johnson's right-hand woman would have been 'a far bigger scandal' than ex-Health Secretary Matt Hancock's infamous lockdown-busting kiss with aide Gina Colangelo, the source added.
Boris Johnson was last night accused of trying to appoint Carrie Johnson to a top taxpayer-funded position while Foreign Secretary before he was blocked by colleagues who discovered they were having an affair
The Prime Minister, who served as chief of the Foreign Office between 2016 and 2018, reportedly wanted to make his future wife his £100,000-a-year chief of staff before allies intervened. They are pictured together at the Tory party conference in Manchester in 2019
Mr Johnson is pictured above with the-then Ms Symonds at a Conservative Party fundraising event in London in February 2018
Another anonymous source, speaking to the Times, described the decision to block Mr Johnson promoting Ms Symonds as one that would protect him.
'An illicit relationship with Carrie was none of our business, making her chief of staff was definitely our business. Our job was to protect him.'
They continued: 'We knew what was going on between them and that it was an insane risk to him to let him do it'.
Having split from Ms Wheeler in September 2018, there was little pause before Mr Johnson was publicly linked to Carrie Symonds, described at the time as a 'party-loving Tory aide'.
Ms Symonds had been a high-profile figure in Westminster for almost a decade, holding senior positions at Tory HQ and as an adviser to Cabinet Ministers.
She crossed paths with Mr Johnson after joining the Tories as a press officer in 2009, before campaigning for him during the 2010 London mayoral selection and working on the successful 'Back Boris' campaign to re-elect