AN east London MP has slammed the appointment of former Chancellor George Osborne as editor of the Evening Standard.
MP for Ilford North Wes Streeting quickly took to social media to slate the Conservative MP’s appointment, which was announced today (Friday, March 17).
From May, the ex-Chancellor and MP for Tatton will edit the daily four days a week, working in the mornings to get the paper out, leaving time for his parliamentary duties in the afternoon.
Streeting launched a fierce attack, demanding Osborne resign as an MP.
He said: “This appointment is bad news for the reputation of politics, journalism, and the relationship between the two.
“The conflict of interest is best exemplified by politicians queuing up to congratulate George Osborne on his new role. In no way is this double-jobbing acceptable.
“At risk of never receiving favourable coverage in the Standard again, this is a real disservice to Tatton and to professional journalism.
“He simply cannot continue as an MP while editing a daily newspaper and his appointment raises serious doubts about whether London’s Labour Mayor, MPs, and councils will receive fair coverage under such an obviously partisan editor.”
The now Tory backbencher said he was “thrilled to be taking the job on”, while staff at the Evening Standard’s central London office are believed to be “shocked and stunned” by the decision.
He added: “Mr Osborne said: "Growing up as a Londoner, I've always known that the Evening Standard is an institution that plays a huge part in the life of the city and its people.
"Now it is a great honour that I can play a part as leader of the editorial team making the Evening Standard the definitive voice of the world's most exciting city.
"I am proud to be a Conservative MP, but as editor and leader of a team of dedicated and independent journalists, our only interest will be to give a voice to all Londoners."
Osborne’s newest job comes on top of the £650,000 one he got at a New York asset management fund BlackRock last week.
He receives £74,000 as a backbench MP and earned £780,000 for making 14 speeches since September.
Other MPs have taken to Twitter to slate his appointment, fearing London Mayor Sadiq Khan and the capital’s many London councils will get less coverage.
Pity you didn't save that joke until April 1st. https://t.co/MntNhrfbjk— Mike Gapes (@MikeGapes) March 17, 2017
Always wondered what the term for a collective of conflicts of interest is ...now I know...it's an Osborne of interests...— stellacreasy (@stellacreasy) March 17, 2017
More to follow.