UK Tory proclaims he is 'pro-Saudi' in a plea for a second job, British newspaper claims
A UK Conservative politician allegedly boasted about his "pro-Saudi" credentials in an attempt to secure a second well-paid job, British media has claimed.
Daniel Kawczynski repeatedly urged a fixer to use his contacts in the Middle East to secure regular paid work outside his ministerial duties, The Guardian reported.
The MP for Shrewsbury and Atcham allegedly invited a fixer and prominent Saudis to private dinners in the House of Commons, the newspaper said, prompting yet more claims that Tories breached rules which bar MPs from using the Commons for private work.
"Please do your best… I need an important strategic position which will allow me to spend time in Gulf ideally helping and advising an important company," said Kawczynski according to WhatsApp conversations seen by The Guardian.
He once claimed that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman had "no better friend in the UK" than him in order to woo a potential Saudi employer, according to the messages - sent from September 2017 to June 2018.
In one incident, the fixer connected Kawczynski to Saudi businessman Yasser bin Homran, who describes himself on Twitter as a "Businessman", "Political analyst" and "#Peace Maker".
When Bin Homran was in London, the Tory booked a table for dinner in the MP’s private dining room in the Commons and said he would take him on a tour of parliament, reported The Guardian.
When the potential for consultancy work appeared to be slipping away, Kawczynski allegedly wrote: "Do they understand how genuinely pro-Saudi I am???"
The Tory minister’s constituency is next to North Shropshire, which faces a by-election Thursday due to the resignation of Owen Paterson.
Owen Paterson came under pressure when reports emerged that he had lobbied the UK Government on behalf of companies he worked for, breaking lobbying rules.
A spokesperson for Kawczynski said he had "broken no rules with regards to second jobs, and most importantly he priorities his work as MP for the constituency of Shrewsbury and Atcham".