A Tory minister has been left humiliated live on-air after she admitted to not having Boris Johnson’s private number.
Culture minister Caroline Dinenage said the prime minister did not give his number out “willy-nilly” in an interview with ITV’s Good Morning Britain, adding she did not even have it.
Dinenage then defended billionaire businessman James Dyson for possessing it. “We are talking about someone who is one of the top British business people in the world,” Dinenage said.
Co-host Kate Garraway hit back: “Sorry! Just a second!
“You’re a cabinet minister and you don’t have Boris Johnson’s number but a commercial operator does have his number and you think that’s reasonable because he’s a commercial operator?”
The minister replied: “I don’t think it’s reasonable…” before moving the conversation on and saying she was not sure if she had his number or not.
She then flicked through her phone live on air to check that she did not have it after all.
This comes as Johnson faces claims of leading a government “by Whatsapp” following revelations he was being lobbied by businessmen on his personal number.
Johnson denies the claim and insisted he would make “no apology” for saving lives by any means in a crisis.