Boris Johnson chief ‘could face ethics probe’ over aide’s ‘Mafia-style’ sacking

Boris Johnson faces growing calls to launch an ethics probe into a top aide who dramatically sacked a young advisor to the Chancellor.

Dominic Cummings faces a furious backlash over his dismissal of 27-year-old Treasury aide Sonia Khan on Thursday night.

The special advisor, who previously worked for pro-EU Philip Hammond, was escorted out of 10 Downing Street by an armed police officer after she was accused of contacting critics of the PM.

Now Tory and Labour MPs, along with a former Scotland Yard officer, are calling for a formal inquiry by Whitehall's Director General for Propriety and Ethics Helen MacNamara.

A Downing Street spokeswoman said: "There is no investigation under way."

But according to the Sunday Times, Ms MacNamara has already spoken to Ms Khan about the incident, and a probe could yet be launched.

Labour MP Stephen Doughty has written to Cabinet Secretary Mark Sedwill, Ms MacNamara and Met Police Commissioner Cressida Dick alleging "serious and legitimate concerns" over whether Mr Cummings broke the Code of Conduct for special advisors.

The code says special advisors must not ask civil servants to do anything inconsistent with their obligations, or to exercise any power over civil service management except when it comes to another special advisor. 

Tory MP Dominic Grieve also urged the Cabinet Office to open a formal inquiry, saying: "It was wrong of the police to get involved.”

Former Vote Leave director Mr Cummings, who was found in contempt of Parliament in March, is notorious for his brash tactics and was accused of telling critics they could "f*** off" on Friday.

The row deepened after Scotland Yard said it was "standard practice" for an officer on the door of No10 to escort Ms Khan out, when "a visitor does not have a pass." 

Yet other visitors to No10 are not escorted by armed police.

Yvette Cooper, the Labour chair of the Commons home affairs select committee, told The Observer: "Government advisers must not abuse their power by drawing the police into heavy- handed political stunts.

"This needs to be reviewed by the cabinet secretary and the Metropolitan police straight away." 

Former senior Met Police officer Dal Babu added: “It’s a shocking abuse of armed officers, it’s appalling.

“I would expect the cabinet secretary Mark Sedwill to conduct an inquiry and I would expect the police to conduct an inquiry."

David Cameron's former chief spin doctor Craig Oliver told the Sunday Times: "It's a bit like a Mafia movie, where somebody takes out a hit on somebody and hasn't sought permission from the boss."

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