Wednesday, January 19, 2022

No 10 employees were asked to “clean up” phones amid allegations by the blocking party.

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Downing Street staff were advised to clean up their phones by removing any information that could suggest that # 10 was holding lockout parties. The independent one was told.

Two sources claim that a senior executive told them it was a good idea to remove any messages that suggest they attended or are even aware that they might “look like a party”.

Boris Johnson faces an internal banning party investigation conducted by Senior Official Sue Gray and anger over revelations that 100 Downing Street workers emailed a beverage event on the 20th they only meet one other person at Outdoors.

Labor deputy leader Angela Rayner said she was throwing “more questions at a prime minister who doesn’t seem to have answers”.

The “purge” proposal came early last month after the first reports of parties on Downing Street surfaced, the sources claim.

One said they were told to “clean up your phone just in case” and to turn it over for investigation.

A second said, “I was leaned against [during the discussion with a senior colleague] and said I should get rid of anything that might look bad. “

Both sources told The independent one they felt pressured to delete messages and pictures.

Claims that a senior employee instructed younger colleagues to remove potential evidence contradicts an email also sent in December instructing employees not to destroy any material that might prove relevant to a criminal or other investigation .

This was supposed to apply to emails, WhatsApp messages, and calendar invitations, but it was reportedly overlooked by some employees, many of whom had conversations over WhatsApp on both their personal phones and work devices.

Home phones are inaccessible during Ms. Gray’s investigation unless employees volunteer them. However, it can happen that employees are forced to hand over workstation handheld devices.

With many employees who attended unblocking events no longer working at # 10 and having deleted other messages from their phones, Ms. Gray will find it difficult to gather all of the available evidence of wrongdoing, sources claim.

E-mails to no. 10 are automatically deleted after 90 days for security reasons. This is also the case in some other sensitive government departments, but not all.

Ultimately, deleted emails can be recovered from servers, but this is far more difficult than accessing historical messages in some other departments, according to people familiar with the process.

Lord Evans of Weardale, chairman of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, said officials should remember that all messages relevant to government business should be kept and recorded.

A spokesman for No. 10 said The independent one that they do not recognize the claims.

“The employees were given clear instructions on how to keep all relevant information. As stated in the task description, all employees are expected to fully cooperate with the investigation, ”said the spokesman.

Ms. Rayner said: “The latest revelations on this scandal raise even more questions for a Prime Minister who doesn’t seem to have the answers.

“From missing minutes to secret WhatsApp messages, a culture of cover-up is endemic to Boris Johnson’s # 10 and the rot starts at the top.

“The Prime Minister has a habit of evading scrutiny, but the consequences are catching up with him. The public deserves to know the truth about what happened in making so many sacrifices to obey the rules. “

Alistair Carmichael, a spokesman for the Liberal Democrats’ Interior Ministry, said: “Destroying evidence for a possible police investigation is an incredibly grave crime.

“No wonder the public has lost all trust in Boris Johnson’s Downing Street. That would be a new low, even for his government.

“Sue Gray needs to ask everyone involved whether they have been pressured or directed to delete messages and emails from parties. If a cover-up has taken place, it must be exposed and all the details disclosed. There should be no more hiding or lying from this prime minister. “

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