Who is the best person to sit on a key sleaze watchdog to ensure the government is behaving within the remit of the law? Well, for Boris Johnson it is an old pal from the Bullingdon Club, who sat alongside the PM, David Cameron and George Osborne in that infamous picture.
As you would expect, this has not gone down well with us mere Serfs, with accusations of cronyism ringing loud.
These cries become even louder after it was revealed that the PM’s Buller boy compadre was picked from 173 applications.
Ewen Fergusson was handed a five-year term on the Committee on Standards in Public Life last month.
His first job could be to investigate his own appointment, but we very much doubt that will happen.
The Labour Party branded the appointment from such a “massive pool” of candidates an “utter joke”, and it’s hard to disagree.
The former lawyer will be able to claim as much as £240 per day in expenses while serving on the committee, which monitors ministers’ conduct and ethics in government.
Over 170 people applied to a position on the independent committee responsible for upholding ethics and integrity in our politics and public life.— Angela Rayner (@AngelaRayner) August 2, 2021
Boris Johnson appointed his chum from the Bullingdon Club instead. A total joke.https://t.co/a83K70fnuq
As you can imagine there were a lot of disgruntled people on social media who didn’t think this was a fair recruitment process.
Everyone’s moaning about sleazy @BorisJohnson appointing a chum from his days in the sleazy Bullingdon Club, out of 173 applicants to lead a sleaze watchdog BUT…actually I’ve got nothing. This is worse than spaffing public funds on Jennifer#TorySleaze— Will Black (@WillBlackWriter) August 2, 2021
‘And when he saw the breadth of his domain, he wept. For there were no more institutions left to corrupt.’— Jorrylad (@jorrylad) August 2, 2021
Nothing to see here, this is absolutely the way a functioning democracy *checks notes* — sorry, a failed state — works. https://t.co/1QFKlbCmAc— Judith Flanders (@JudithFlanders) August 3, 2021
I’m old enough to remember when Dominic Raab said we’ll root out corruption https://t.co/YLFbhfkJ37— Abdullahi Mohamed (@abdulmohamed02) August 3, 2021
In fairness to Johnson he’s uncharacteristically made a good choice – the other 171 candidates weren’t fellow members of an organisation that hired prostitutes & excelled in destruction , humiliation & bullying so their experience of sleaze was limited . https://t.co/BGiEeidCbM— Tanita Tikaram? (@tanita_tikaram) August 3, 2021
This is the sort of blatant cronyism we need investigated by the independent committee responsible for upholding ethics and…oh shit! https://t.co/I2SGR9lmoT— tom jamieson (@jamiesont) August 3, 2021
What are the chances?— Marina Purkiss (@MarinaPurkiss) August 3, 2021
Out of 171 candidates for a Govt role
They happened to pick Boris Johnson’s Bullingdon Club ‘chum’
Thank goodness there’s a new Govt sleaze watchdog to investigate this
You guessed it
Boris’ Bullingdon chum
What an unfair implication. I’m sure correct scrutiny was applied, and they simply appointed the right Boris-licking, Bolly-swigging, banknote-burning, Bullingdon Old Boy for the job. https://t.co/ItGDv8pdho— Joanne Harris (@Joannechocolat) August 2, 2021
I’m going to report this blatant example of cronyism to the man responsible for rooting out cronyism who just happens to be the man chosen by this blatant example of cronyism. https://t.co/wQXhEP0Qre— David Schneider (@davidschneider) August 2, 2021
He’s just trolling us now isn’t he https://t.co/b9NvT6ZAXx— Eddie Robson (@EddieRobson) August 2, 2021
All candidates were objectively assessed against strict criteria, such as ‘experience of being a chum of the PM’ and ‘skilled in membership of a Bullingdon Club’. https://t.co/FuHLsixgkf— Parody Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson_MP) August 2, 2021
It will probably come as no surprise to anyone to learn the Government passed over 171 candidates to pick Bullingdon Club ‘chum’ of Boris Johnson for sleaze watchdog role https://t.co/GW4FIiaaMP— Peter Stefanovic (@PeterStefanovi2) August 2, 2021
I guess Brexit really was, as many of us thought, all about taking back control to be as corrupt and sleazy as possible – no oversight and no scrutiny.— Prof. Maryam Shahmanesh (@MaryamShJ) August 2, 2021
These things always make me think of Tony Benn’s 5 questions for people in power.— Corey Albone (@cwalbone) August 3, 2021
1. What power do you have?
2. Who gave it to you?
3. In whose interest do you exercise it?
4. To whom are you accountable?
5. How can we get rid of you?