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The House of Commons erupted after Prime Minister Rishi Sunak hit out at Sir Keir Starmer over bullying allegations levelled against Dominic Raab. The Labour leader hit out at Rishi Suank over his handling of bullying allegations against the Deputy Prime Minister. But responding to Sir Keir’s remarks, Mr Sunak claimed that the opposition leader allowed “hate” to “spread unchallenged in the Labour party”.
This comes as Dominic Raab faces as many as 24 claims of bullying.
When challenged on the issue at PMQs, Mr Sunak said: “The honourable gentleman asks these questions about what was known and I followed due process.
“I appointed an independent adviser as soon as I was made aware of new information. But if they’re so concerned about behaviour in public life when recently one of his own MPs was forced to speak out because being in his party had reminded her of being in an abusive relationship – and then his own office was caught undermining her.
“He ought to be supporting her and her colleagues but if he can’t be trusted to stand up for the women in his party, he can’t be trusted to stand up for Britain.”
Mr Sunak was referring to Labour MP Rosie Duffield.
But Sir Keir hit back: “Mr Speaker, at the last count, the deputy PM was facing 24 separate allegations of bullying. according to recent reports, some of the complainants were physically sick. One says they were left suicidal.
“How would he feel if one of his friends or relatives was being forced to work for a bully simply because the man at the top was too weak to do anything about it?”
In response, the Prime Minister went on the offensive, hitting out at Sir Keir for failing to acknowledge his reference to Ms Duffield.
Mr Sunak said: “I notice he didn’t say anything about why one of his own MPs described being in his own party.”
Responding to Sir Keir’s comments about Mr Raab, the Prime Minister said: “When I was made aware of formal complaints, I instructed a leading independent KC to conduct an investigation – because I take action, but what did he say at the weekend? He said at the weekend that hate had been allowed to spread unchallenged under his predecessor.
“He was speaking as if he wasn’t even there. but he was sitting right next to him, supporting him for four long years, not challenging, and it’s typical of him, declining to lead, sitting on the fence, carping from the sidelines and never standing up for a principal that matters.”
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