Boris Johnson Criticized for Making Millions While Rarely Appearing in Commons – Boris Johnson has been urged to stay a member of parliament and reserve the speeches for which he charges private firms millions of pounds for the House of Commons. Already having earned more than £3.7 million in 2023, the former prime minister has been criticized for his limited contributions to parliament.
Fresh figures disclosed by the “Westminster accounts” investigation, led by Sky News, reveal that Johnson’s outside pay accounted for about 85 percent of that for all MPs this year. There is no proof of wrongdoing, and Johnson is claimed to have declared all of his extra income in accordance with the regulations.
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Since leaving Downing Street in September, Johnson has spoken in the House of Commons sixteen times over ten days, received free housing worth tens of thousands of pounds, and earned millions for talks and an advance on his memoirs.
All of this is in addition to his £84,000 salary as a member of parliament and the annual allowance of six figures available to all former prime ministers. Charging more than £1m for a speech was not “the best value for money, but people will make their choices about what they want to pay to hear,” said Bridget Phillipson, the shadow education secretary.
She told Sky News: “He’s an elected MP and perhaps he should be making those speeches in the House of Commons chamber. Boris Johnson just does what he wants. He always does what he wants. I think popping back up every so often just reminds us of exactly how debased the Conservative party has become.”
Phillipson also brought up claims of bullying against the justice secretary, Dominic Raab, which he rejects, as well as the reappointment of the home secretary, Suella Braverman, days after she was found to have violated the ministerial code. Such issues showed the Conservative party was “rotten from top to bottom, not just Johnson”, Phillipson said.
The former Tory cabinet minister Stephen Dorrell said Johnson should ask himself: “Is he still in politics, or is he in show business?” “If he wants to be taken seriously as a contributor to the political debate, the place where political debate should take place is the House of Commons,” said Dorrell.
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Now a Liberal Democrat, Dorrell suggested Johnson could not decide whether he wanted to be a “private figure earning good money because he has high profile” or to remain a public figure. At the height of the scandal over the Tory MP Owen Paterson being censured for paid lobbying, Johnson threw his support behind a plan to impose a “reasonable limit” on MPs’ outside earnings.