Are you really saying after watching the Allegra Stratton video that we don’t know that a Christmas party happened?
Matt Hancock said Leaked images obtained by ITV News showing Downing Street staff joking about holding a Christmas party at number 10 does not confirm that the event happened.
On Tuesday, ITV News released a movie of then-Boris Johnson spokeswoman Allegra Stratton discussing the reunion just four days after it allegedly took place last December, when indoor social gatherings were banned.
On ITV’s Good Morning Britain, Mr. Hancock was asked, “Are you really saying after the Allegra Stratton video that we don’t know a Christmas party happened? You’re reading it very differently from the rest of the nation.” .
To which he replied: “You have to get to the bottom of the facts, and I don’t know them.”
Watch the full exchange between Ed Oldfield and Allegra Stratton at the televised mock press conference
“You rehearse all the potential difficult questions,” Hancock said.
“But they are not making that up, they are referring to something that actually happened,” replied host Adil Ray. To which Mr. Hancock said, “I don’t know.”
The Conservative MP was health secretary at the time the footage was filmed, but she resigned the following year after admitting to violating social distancing guidelines by kissing their close helper – again, revealed in leaked images.
Fueled further on the issue, as the only Conservative MP who had agreed to appear on the show Wednesday morning, Hancock repeatedly said he did not know about the issue.
He highlighted: “I was not there, the PM was not there, I don’t know anything else about that.”
When asked if people should lose their jobs if the event is confirmed to have happened (given his own resignation for breaking the rules), Hancock said the situation was hypothetical and declined to respond.
The former health secretary said he was unaware that parties were held in his own department when he was minister. “We were working pretty hard,” he said.