Hancock issued a short statement amid calls for his resignation on Friday after the Sun printed CCTV footage he said showed him smooching Gina Coladangelo, 43, whom he hired last year with taxpayers’ money.
“I accept that I violated social distancing guidelines under these circumstances,” the 42-year-old politician said of the footage, one of which showed him grabbing Coladangelo’s butt as they walked away. kissed.
“I let people down and I’m so sorry,” Hancock said in a statement, while insisting he would stay.
“I remain focused on working to get the country out of this pandemic and I would be grateful for my family’s confidentiality on this personal matter,” he said.
His statement made no mention of Martha, his wife of 15 years, who was pictured wearing dark sunglasses to hide her eyes shortly after the story broke early on Friday, but still wearing her wedding ring.
The reported “scorching melee” was captured in CCTV footage at the London Department of Health headquarters in Whitehall last month, the Sun said.
The shots were given to the British newspaper by a whistleblower who alleged that the two men were regularly caught in clinch together.
The source said it was “shocking that Mr Hancock had an affair in the midst of a pandemic with a counselor and a friend whom he used public money to hire.”
“They’ve tried to keep it a secret, but everyone knows what’s going on inside a building like this,” the source told The Sun.
Hancock – already criticized for his handling of the pandemic – faced quick calls for his resignation.
The opposition Labor Party called on Prime Minister Boris Johnson to sack Hancock, saying his position was “hopelessly untenable”.
“If Matt Hancock has secretly maintained a relationship with an advisor in his office – whom he personally appointed to a taxpayer-funded post – this is a flagrant abuse of power and a clear conflict of interest. “Said Anneliese Dodds, chair of the opposition Labor Party.
“The indictment against Matt Hancock includes the waste of taxpayer money, leaving care homes exposed and now charged with breaking his own COVID rules,” she said.
“He set the rules. He admits he broke them. He has to go. If he does not resign, the Prime Minister should dismiss him ”, Dodds tweeted after Hancock’s apology.
However, Johnson insisted via his spokesperson that his Health Secretary still had his full confidence.
“The Prime Minister has accepted the Health Secretary’s apology and considers the matter closed,” the spokesperson said.
With post wires