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Conservative Association vote to re-adopt Nadhim Zahawi as candidate for the constituency despite government sacking

STRATFORD MP Nadhim Zahawi was tonight (31st March) re-adopted as the candidate for the constituency despite having been sacked from the government for breaching the ministerial code over his tax affairs.

There had been suggestions Mr Zahawi might be de-selected because of the furore created by his behaviour, but tonight Stratford Conservative Association issued a statement reaffirming their faith in the MP.

The statement said: “Tonight the executive council of Stratford-on-Avon Conservative Association re-adopted Nadhim Zahawi as our parliamentary candidate.

Nadhim Zahawi MP at Ilmington School. Photo: Mark Williamson. (57584693)
Nadhim Zahawi MP at Ilmington School. Photo: Mark Williamson. (57584693)

“We look forward to continuing to work alongside him to deliver for the residents and communities within the constituency.”

Mr Zahawi suffered the ignominious experience of instant dismissal as chairman of the Conservative Party and Minister without Portfolio two months ago after ethics adviser Sir Laurie Magnus found him guilty of seven breaches of the ministerial code.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak acted swiftly to sack Mr Zahawi after receiving Sir Laurie’s report early on a Sunday morning.

In an exchange of letters Mr Zahawi did not apologise for breaching the code, and shortly afterwards allies of the MP made it clear that he felt he’d been unfairly treated and had not been given sufficient time to put his case.

They even hinted that Mr Zahawi would be issuing a full statement explaining his position, but that never came.

Mr Zahawi has never spoken directly to his constituents to explain himself, despite being given numerous opportunities to do so via the Herald. The paper has repeatedly asked him for an interview and he has repeatedly failed to respond, even by way of an acknowledgement.

The controversy surrounding the MP came to a head when it emerged that he’d been engaged in a dispute with HMRC over payment of taxes and had even had to pay a fine of around £1 million at a time when he was Chancellor of the Exchequer, the minister in charge of the nation’s taxation system.

For a full report and analysis see the next issue of the Herald.

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