Gravesham Conservative Westcourt By Election Councillor/Candidate PPE allegations
The Gravesham Conservative Councillor who was a Candidate in the GBC Westcourt By-Election is named in alleged PPE contract controversy – links to the published articles below
Covid contracts: PPE fixer who was Tory donor named in admin error – BBC News – 20 April 2021 – https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-56667960
Tory donor’s role in £100m PPE contract scrubbed from documents following ‘admin error’ – The Mirror – 20 April 2021 – https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/tory-donors-role-100m-ppe-23946654?fbclid=IwAR1CcC1l-3o3B6MgeHBpHSKQzn064BsW6E679hp3tcjCPW5nycM2aa9y7Ak
Tory donor role in PPE contract revealed by admin error – The Independent 20 April 2021 – https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/tory-donor-samir-jassal-ppe-contract-b1834351.html?fbclid=IwAR0vgn1TOxpJ87aGVgYUOfDOkeFR2j53G8uptb7E4b6rO8T9pCeEnQC0dJE
Gravesham Council candidate named in PPE contract contriversy – Kent Messenger 20 April 2021- https://www.kentonline.co.uk/gravesend/news/tory-candidate-caught-up-in-ppe-contract-row-245884/?fbclid=IwAR2wZL3y0crPx03k5tOcGOfcbQhP92Y99Il8VMK-FGmP66Ort7u8S08id4c
Former Tory parliamentary candidate who campaigned alongside Boris Johnson ‘brokered £100m government contract for PPE’ – Daily Mail 20 April 2021 https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9491301/Former-Tory-candidate-brokered-100m-government-PPE-contract.html?fbclid=IwAR2FVUO6qGQyOjRP6-9ONUfKyWNL9DiXaUgak2U8kBwmZs-8zjUbZLnsjHg
UK government faces legal action over £102m face mask deal – Financial Times – 20 April 2021 – https://www.ft.com/content/a5791a21-f214-4ddb-8fd2-f722600457f2
Covid-19: Government faces legal action over £102m contract for FFP3 masks – The British Medical Journal – 21 April 2021 https://www.bmj.com/content/373/bmj.n1040
‘Questions to Answer’ – Gravesham Conservative Candidate named in Conservative PPE Row
Details have emerged via the BBC (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-56667960) of the involvement of Conservative candidate and donor Samir Jassal in a £100 million PPE contract awarded by the Government. This news has raised serious questions for Mr Jassal and the Conservative Party. Recent Government awarded contracts have come under public scrutiny due to allegations of cronyism and Gravesham Labour is calling for answers following the latest revelation.
Karina O’Malley, Labour’s Candidate for the Westcourt Ward by-election says ‘This news raises more questions than answers but will come as a shock to the hard working residents of Westcourt and the Borough many of whom work, or worked in key worker positions such as our NHS, caring, retail and public sector and feel that there is one rule for them and one rule for those in the Conservative Party.’
There are more questions to answer
• What did the local Conservative Party know about this when they selected their candidate?
• Do the local Conservative Party know if any donations have been made to them locally or nationally from this or other PPE money?
The Leader of the Labour Group on Gravesham Borough Council and Council Leader Cllr John Burden agrees. ‘While this seems to have been released due to an administration error it does not take away the fact that this is another person in the Conservative Party with links to lucrative Government contracts. This Conservative Candidate is known for being involved in construction, so it does beg the question about how he was able to become an expert in PPE so quickly at the start of the pandemic to win a Government contact? In addition, according to this article it seems that much of this PPE was unusable where it was needed most to protect our NHS and key workers so I feel there are questions to answer on this front as well and that has to be a concern to us all.
Since this was published there have been more articles recently which for completeness we have added below alleging involvement of the Tory Home Secretary linked to the above contract issues.
Priti Patel in £20m PPE lobbying storm: Home Secretary is accused of ‘glaring’ breach of Ministerial Code after writing to Michael Gove on behalf of healthcare firm to seal surgical masks deal – Daily Mail – 14 May 2021
Priti Patel accused of ‘glaring’ breach of code by lobbying for £20,000,000 PPE deal – Metro Online – 15 May 2021
Priti Patel accused of lobbying for ‘get-rich-quick’ £20m PPE deal – The Guardian – 15 May 2021
Covid contracts: Priti Patel accused of lobbying for face mask firm – BBC – 15 May 2021
Demand for inquiry into alleged PPE lobbying by Priti Patel – The Independent – 15 May 2021