Rishi Sunak faces PMQs on Nadhim Zahawi’s taxes

Today, while the debate surrounding Nadhim Zahawi’s multi-million pound tax settlement rages, Rishi Sunak will face the full gauntlet of PMQs.

Mr. Sunak is preparing for a grilling from Keir Starmer on what he knew and when about the Tory chair’s interactions with HMRC.

The possibility of a probe by the PM’s independent advisor has been welcomed by Mr. Zahawi, who has stated he has no plans to resign.

But as Downing Street assesses its ability to maintain the line, the Commons fights and the hours leading up to them might be a moment of truth for Mr. Zahawi.

With reports that the subsequent prime ministers were not informed of the specifics of Mr. Zahawi’s conflict with the taxman, there are mounting concerns about the role of the civil service in the meanwhile.

Mr. Sunak has acknowledged that there are “issues” regarding what transpired between Mr. Zahawi and HMRC that need to be addressed.

Rishi Sunak runs the gauntlet of PMQs amid row over Nadhim Zahawi's tax

Unrest among Conservative members has also been fueled by the dispute as a sobering survey reveals that Mr. Sunak’s popularity has declined over the previous week.

According to former minister Caroline Nokes, Mr. Zahawi should step down from his position during the standards investigation.

According to No. 10, Sir Laurie Magnus, the new ethics advisor, will concentrate on Mr. Zahawi’s ministerial statements, but it may also include his earlier tax arrangement.

Reports that Mr. Zahawi had agreed to pay a “penalty” of more than £1 million as part of a $5 million tax settlement with HM Revenue and Customs sparked the controversy.

Although Mr. Zahawi’s supporters acknowledge that he was punished for the hefty tax bill, they maintain that he was more “careless” with his money than intentionally trying to avoid paying it. According to Mr. Zahawi, he is “sure that I behaved appropriately throughout.”

He formed the polling company YouGov before going into politics, and the tax settlement concerned a shareholding in that company.

It was decided upon during his short tenure as Chancellor last year, when he oversaw the nation’s tax structure.

According to some reports, Mr. Zahawi’s request for a knighthood in the New Year’s Honours list was refused as a consequence of the disagreement.

However, No. 10 said Wednesday that Mr. Sunak was unaware of the controversy when he chose Mr. Zahawi to lead the Conservative Party in October.

According to The Times, Ms. Truss hired Mr. Zahawi as a Cabinet Office minister in September without raising any concerns about his tax obligations.

He and Jeremy Hunt were both candidates for chancellor in October, but once again, it seems that authorities did not express any worries.

Mr. Sunak was also not told of Mr. Zahawi’s recent tax settlement when he took office as prime minister later that month.

Simon Case, the cabinet secretary, is being questioned about his involvement in light of the lack of forewarning.

According to a person who spoke to The Times, Mr. Case was unaware of the circumstances since HMRC had not informed him.

Another person said that in light of a number of scandals inside the government, the proprietary and ethics team that reviews cabinet selections was unable to handle the problem.

»Rishi Sunak faces PMQs on Nadhim Zahawi’s taxes«

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