Boots refuses to back Hewitt after lobbygate

ALLIANCE Boots is refusing to back special consultant Patricia Hewitt, after she was sensationally suspended from the Labour Party over the cash for lobbying scandal.

A spokesperson for the leading pharmacy chain said her contract was “still in place” and that it was being “reviewed regularly”, but she would not confirm that the former health secretary’s job was safe.

She added: “Hewitt has not undertaken lobbying activities on behalf of the business and it was never intended for her to create a direct access point to governments.”

But Hewitt’s job at BT, where she earns £75,000 a year as a non-executive director, is not under threat.

Sources at BT said that the lobbying scandal was a matter for Hewitt and the Labour Party, and that she would remain on the telecom firm’s board.

“The company is happy with her performance as a non-executive director,” a BT spokesman said.
Private equity firm Cinven, which specialises in buying healthcare companies, also employs Hewitt as an adviser. It refused to comment.

Hewitt was suspended from the Labour Party after being secretly filmed apparently offering access to ministers in exchange for cash.