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HHealth Secretary Matt Hancock has denied allegations that he violated the government Covid curfew.The spokesperson for the Cabinet minister insisted that the allegations that Mr Hancock remained drinking in a Commons bar beyond 10 p.m. were false.

Comments came after the Mail on Sunday said the health secretary violated restrictions introduced by the government to stop the spread of the virus.

The newspaper reported that Mr Hancock arrived at the Commons bar just before a 9:40 pm vote, ordered a glass of white wine and joked: ‘The drinks are on me – but Public Health England is in charge of the payment methodology. , so I won’t pay for anything. ”

Mr Hancock’s reference to Public Health England came after he addressed the Commons regarding the controversy the organization was misplacing nearly 16,000 coronavirus test results.

The spokesperson for the health secretary insisted the minister had not broken the curfew rules.

He said: “The proposed chronology of events is wrong and no rules have been broken.

“The Secretary of State was in the smoking room before the vote that evening. The Secretary of State left the smoking room to vote. The vote took place at 9:42 p.m.

“The Secretary of State then left the parliamentary domain to return home”.

However, a government source told the PA News Agency that Mr Hancock made the joke as reported.

The accusations come at a very sensitive time for the government, with mayors in northern England voicing their opposition to measures expected next week to shut down parts of the hospitality industry, such as pubs.

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