NADHIM Zahawi has vowed to slash taxes by making government departments more efficient – but admitted he isn’t sure exactly how rich he is.
This morning the Tory leadership hopeful promised that if made PM he would make sure more hard earned money stays in people’s pockets.
Leadership hopeful Nadhim Zahawi said he isn’t sure how rich he is
To do this, Whitehall mandarins from every government department would be forced to cut spending by 20 per cent.
Mr Zahawi has vowed under his plan for Britain, “everything is on the table” when considering tax cuts – including scrapping this year’s National Insurance hike.
The Chancellor entered the crowded race to be crowned new Tory leader this weekend.
But his campaign to win support has already got off to a rocky start.
On Sky News this morning Mr Zahawi, who founded the polling company YouGov, said he doesn’t know exactly how much money he has.
The Chancellor said: “I’ve been very lucky, I’m self-made. I did really well by investing in the UK.
“I don’t think it’s right to go into numbers because I’ll probably get it wrong. These things move around.”
Over the weekend Mr Zahawi also came under fire over after it was revealed he is being probed over his tax affairs.
Yesterday a senior Whitehall source said the tax investigation remains “unresolved”, The Independent claimed.
The website also stated officials raised a “flag” over his financial affairs before he was given the keys to No11.
But on Sunday Mr Zahawi claimed he has always paid his taxes, telling Sky News: “I was clearly being smeared.
“I was being told that the serious fraud office, the national crime agency, HMRC are looking into me.
“I’m not aware of this. I have always declared my taxes. I paid my taxes in the UK.
“I will answer any questions the HMRC has of me.
“I will go further – I’m going to make a commitment today that if I am Prime Minister I think the right thing to do is to publish my accounts annually.”
Earlier this week it was reported that officers within the NCA’s International Corruption Unit had looked at the ex- Education Secretary’s finance and tax affairs.
Investigators from HMRC, the NCA and the Serious Fraud Office have all become involved — but there is no suggestion of any wrong-doing.
The team looking into the matter are responsible for offshore tax affairs.
Mr Zahawi is running for Tory leader on the ticket of lowering taxes for individuals, families and businesses.
He is up against another 10 MPs who have put their hats in the ring.
So far the hot favourite to win is Rishi Sunak.
The former Chancellor has received the backing of the highest number of Tory MPs – currently 37.
Others in the race include Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, former Health Secretary Sajid Javid, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps and Attorney General Suella Braverman.
All 11 candidates are running on a platform to cut taxes and shrink the size of the state.
Mr Javid has vowed to slash the size of government coffers by £39 billion.
But he has been criticised for not properly demonstrating how he will find the money to fund the tax cuts.
A number of candidates, including Mr Javid and the popular defence minister Penny Mordant, have also vowed to impose fuel duty cuts.
Mr Zahawi is hoping to impress by presenting himself as being responsible with the nation’s finances.
Nadhim Zahawi last night hit out at ‘smears’ over his tax affairs
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