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UK health department to investigate leak of Hancock affair footage, says minister

UK health department to investigate leak of Hancock affair footage, says minister

Matt Hancock leaves Downing Street in London, Britain on Mar 10, 2021. (File photo: REUTERS/John Sibley)

LONDON: Britain's health ministry will investigate how a recording of former minister Matt Hancock kissing and embracing his aide was released to the media and forced his resignation, Northern Ireland minister Brandon Lewis said on Sunday (Jun 27).

"It is a matter I know the department of health will be looking into to understand exactly how that recording ... got out of the system," he told Sky News, adding that the ministry would be launching an internal investigation.

"What Matt did was wrong, he acknowledged that, it's why he apologised immediately for his behaviour and acknowledged what he did was wrong and it's ultimately why he's taken the decision that his position was untenable and distracting from the wider work we all have to do ... to move out of the pandemic." 

READ: UK health minister Matt Hancock quits after breaking COVID-19 rules with affair

READ: UK health minister pictured kissing aide; opposition wants appointment 'looked into'

UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock resigned on Saturday, conceding he had let the public down after The Sun newspaper published a security camera still obtained apparently from a whistleblower showing him kissing the aide in his office on May 6.

Hancock had earlier apologised on Friday, and accepted he had breached the government's own social-distancing restrictions during the affair.

The main opposition Labour party said the government needed to answer questions about the undisclosed appointment of the aide, former lobbyist Gina Coladangelo, to Hancock's top advisory team.

The Sun said Hancock met the aide at Oxford University in the early 2000s. She is listed on the health department's website as a non-executive director.

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Source: Reuters/ic

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