United Kingdom

David Cameron prepared to give evidence to Greensill scandal probe

David Cameron has suggested he will give evidence to a parliamentary inquiry into the Greensill lobbying storm.

A spokesman for the former prime minister said he will 'respond positively' to any request from MPs.

He said: 'David Cameron will respond positively to all such requests when the terms of reference of each inquiry are made clear and any invitations to provide evidence are received.

'While he was an adviser to the business and not a board director, he is keen to ensure that lessons from it going into administration are learned.' 

David Cameron has suggested he will give evidence to a parliamentary inquiry into the Greensill lobbying storm

The Treasury's probe will almost certainly examine how Lex Greensill enjoyed such access to the heart of government during the Cameron administration (pair pictured in Saudi Arabia in 2020)

Yesterday the Commons Treasury Committee launched an inquiry into the financial firm's collapse, which threatens thousands of British jobs at Liberty Steel.

It came after Tory MPs, whipped by the Government, blocked a Labour motion to create a committee to specifically drill down into the lobbying saga.

But the Treasury's probe will almost certainly examine how Lex Greensill enjoyed such access to the heart of government during the Cameron administration.

And how Mr Cameron, later an adviser and shareholder, used his influence and contacts to lobby ministers and officials on Greensill's behalf - including texting Rishi Sunak in an unsuccessful effort to secure coronavirus loans.

The former Conservative premier has already denied breaching lobbying rules but acknowledged he should have communicated via formal channels. 

The lobbying row deepened this week when it emerged that a senior civil servant worked for Greensill while still on the Whitehall pay roll.

Bill Crothers joined Greensill as an adviser in September 2015 while still in his £149,000 role as the government's chief procurement officer. 

Yesterday the Prime Minister insisted he had not spoken to Mr Cameron about his role in the Greensill affair

Lord Pickles, chair of the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments (Acoba) which oversees the 'revolving door' of business and government, is demanding an explanation.

The morning he will appear before the Commons Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee (PACAC), which has indicated it will launch its own wider investigation into the Greensill affair.

Cabinet Secretary Simon Case, the UK's most senior civil servant, last night ordered Whitehall's top mandarins to notify him of any second jobs. 

In a letter to permanent secretaries, he said the disclosures were a cause of 'acute concern'. 

Boris Johnson has also tasked City lawyer Nigel Boardman with heading an inquiry into Greensill and lobbying. 

Yesterday the Prime Minister insisted he had not spoken to Mr Cameron about his role in the Greensill affair. 

Greensill, a firm that specialised in supply-chain financing, cratered into administration in March this year.

It was a key backer of Liberty Steel, which is now in jeopardy and jobs hang in the balance.

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