Boris Johnson's peerages spark concern as Lords plead to hold urgent meeting with Sunak

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Boris Johnson’s resignation honours list has sparked concern among the House of Lords vetting committee, with officials demanding an urgent meeting with No10. The watchdog for new appointments to the upper house of Parliament is thought to be worried about the names put forward by the former Prime Minister.

His 20 strong list included former Downing Street special adviser Charlotte Owen, thought to be 27, and the 30-year-old former political director at Conservative Campaign Headquarters, Ross Kempsell.

The pair will become the youngest ever life peers.

The House of Lords vetting committee fears neither has the experience necessary to be appointed to the life-long roles in Parliament, according to The Telegraph.

But the body is powerless to stop the former Prime Minister’s choices from going ahead.

READ MORE: Rishi Sunak set to destroy Boris Johnson’s legacy as policy scrapped

Earlier this week Express.co.uk revealed Mr Johnson’s latest additions to the Lords would cost UK taxpayers an average of £559,000 a year.

Figures indicate the annual cost per peer averages at £27,959.

Dr Jess Garland, director of policy and research at the Electoral Reform Society, told Express.co.uk: “We’ve already seen 26 new appointments announced in recent weeks – sending the bloated House of Lords to over 800 members.

“With Johnson’s new list and Truss’ resignation honours still to come this is only going to get worse.

“Lifetime appointments to make our laws are being handed out at the whim of ex-prime ministers even after they’ve left office – acts of political patronage that look more like rewards for loyalty than necessary additions to create an effective and experienced second chamber.

“We need a smaller, elected House of Lords, where lawmakers are chosen by the people they serve not hand-picked by the prime minister of the day.

“It’s time to end this farce and deliver the democratic second chamber our country needs.”

The plea for a meeting with Mr Sunak to discuss the bulging size of the House of Lords comes less than a month after an open letter was sent to political party leaders by Lord Bew, who chairs the appointments commission.

“The Commission is increasingly uncomfortable about the limits of its role in these instances,” he said.

“The Commission would ask that you, as party leaders making nominations for life peerages, continue to bear in mind the long-established Principles of Public Life as a benchmark for assessing conduct.”



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