United Kingdom

Priti Patel receives Moderna jab amid claims she breached ministerial code in £20million PPE scandal

A smiling Priti Patel today joined millions of Brits who have received a Covid-19 vaccine dose, as Labour claim she breached the Ministerial Code when lobbying for a £20million PPE contract last year. 

The Home Secretary, 49, gave out a warm smile from beneath a mask as she was pictured at Guy's Hospital in Southwark this morning.

Ms Patel received her first dose of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine from Dr Vin Diwakar at the south London hospital. 

She joins millions of Brits who have received their jabs as the country is set to unlock further with step three of the Government's road map on Monday. 

The news comes amid a brewing storm after Ms Patel wrote to fellow cabinet minister Michael Gove on behalf of a pharmaceutical firm seeking a PPE contract last spring.

Ms Patel has denied any wrongdoing as Labour accused the Home Secretary of a 'glaring and flagrant breach' of the Ministerial Code.

Priti Patel, 49, lets out a smile from behind her mask as she receives her first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine

A newly published American study has said just one dose of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine cuts the risk of getting sick with Covid-19 by over 80 per cent

Ms Patel, 49, received her first Moderna dose this morning at Guy's Hospital in south London, as she is accused of a 'glaring and flagrant breach' of the Ministerial Code.

Pictures show the Home Secretary speaking with Dr Vin Diwakar as she rolls up her sleeve on her left arm in eager anticipation.

As the needle goes in, she looks towards the camera and lets out a warm smile from beneath her pink mask.

The news comes as she was accused of a 'glaring and flagrant' breach of the Ministerial Code after she lobbied a fellow minister on behalf of a healthcare firm trying to seal a £20million deal for PPE.

A Daily Mail investigation has revealed Ms Patel spoke with cabinet minister Michael Gove over a £20million mask contract for Pharmaceuticals Direct Ltd last April.

She had been approached by her former advisor Samir Jassal, a Tory councillor in Kent, but made no mention of him or his links to PDL in her lobbying to Mr Gove.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock rejected the proposal, saying the masks were 'not suitable for the NHS', but weeks later PDL were awarded a no-competition £102.6m contract to supply a better type of mask.

Labour has demanded an investigation, describing this as potentially 'a glaring and flagrant breach of the Ministerial Code.'

Ms Patel has denied any wrongdoing as the deal is now being challenged at a High Court judicial review.

Her spokesman said: 'The Home Secretary rightly followed up representations made to her about the vital supply of PPE. 

'During a time of national crisis failure to do so would have been a dereliction of duty.' 

From Monday, May 17, England will be under step three of the Government's roadmap of Covid-19 restrictions as infection figures have plummeted.

As of yesterday afternoon, more than 55 million people have received either their first or both doses of a Covid-19 vaccine in the United Kingdom. 

And those receiving the Moderna jab have seen the risk of getting ill with Covid-19 drop by more than 90%, according to an American study. 

The Home Secretary speaks with Dr Vin Diwakar as she receives her Moderna vaccine in London this morning

Home Secretary Priti Patel with Samir Jassal, a two-time parliamentary candidate and Tory councillor in Kent, when he stood for Feltham in west London in the 2017 general election

Ms Patel is likely to be buoyed by the good news that just one dose of Moderna's vaccine can cut the risk of getting ill with Covid-19 by more than 80 per cent, according to a study by the American Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

'This report provided the most compelling information to date that COVID-19 vaccines were performing as expected in the real world,' said CDC Director Dr Rochelle Walensky in a statement accompanying the new study yesterday.

55,434,965 people across the United Kingdom have received either their first of both doses of a coronavirus vaccine as of Friday, May 14.

Daily vaccination figures have tumbled in recent weeks from their high of more than 500,000 per day in the middle of March.

Numbers dipped below 100,000 a day at the start of April, but we are starting to see an incremental rise as the nation heads towards a summer of fewer restrictions.

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