Matt Hancock jeered by MPs as he makes first Commons return since affair scandal


MATT Hancock was mocked and heckled by MPs today during first Commons speech since resigning over his lockdown-busting affair.

The shamed ex health secretary sparked bellows of laughter as he laid into “successive governments” for “ducking” reform of social care.

Matt Hancock was jeered during his speech in the Commons today

It was the first time in almost a decade that Mr Hancock, who has held a string of ministerial posts, has appeared on the back benches.

The 42-year-old was forced to quit his Cabinet post after HOAR exposed his rule-breaking clinch with married aide Gina Coladangelo.

He was previously in charge of health under Theresa May, who had to ditch her own plan for a “dementia tax” to pay for social care.

Mr Hancock spoke today during a debate about the PM’s plan to hike National Insurance on workers to pay for social care.

He said: “The reform of social care has been ducked for decades because successive governments have put it in the ‘too difficult’ box.”

His remarks prompted jeers from fellow MPs but he ploughed on: “So can I congratulate the Prime Minister for delivering on our commitments and his commitment.

“And can I ask him to ensure that as well as the money, we integrate properly the NHS with social care, so that people can get the dignity that they deserve?”

Social care reform

The PM, who initially defended Mr Hancock over his lockdown breaking affair, thanked him for “playing a major part” in driving the reforms.

Boris replied: “He is completely right, and he has been massively encouraging to the Government over the course of the last few weeks.

“Of course this is going to be difficult, but it’s got to be done and we must have a system whereby people can work across both the health sector and the care sector in an integrated way.

“We’ve got to have single budget holders and we’ve got to make sure, for instance, that you have single electronic records in both health and social care. These are things that need to be fixed.

“And we need to make sure that people are cared for appropriately and in the right setting.”

In second intervention, praising the Government’s response to the pandemic, Mr Hancock was loudly booed by opposition MPs.

The shamed ex Cabinet minister was caught on CCTV embracing Ms Coladangelo in his office while social distancing rules were still in place.

His subsequent resignation left him without a ministerial post for the first time since September 2012 when he was first elevated by David Cameron.

He is said to have told his wife Martha that their 15-year marriage was over when he learned news of the affair was about to break.

Mr Hancock then announce he would be spending time away from the political limelight to focus on the fallout for his three children.

Local party bosses in his safe West Suffolk seat were infuriated by his behaviour, with some even calling on him to step down as an MP.