- Toby Melville/Reuters
- Damian Green will stand in for Theresa May at prime minister’s questions on Wednesday.
- The first secretary of state is still under investigation over claims of inappropriate behaviour.
LONDON – Theresa May has been accused of pre-empting the sexual harassment investigation into her deputy Damian Green, after agreeing for him to stand in for her at today’s prime minister’s questions, despite the investigation into his actions being unresolved.
The first secretary of state is under investigation by the Cabinet Office, who is looking into allegations of inappropriate behaviour by Green towards a female Conservative activist, as well as claims that he had pornography on his parliamentary computers.
The prime minister will not be present in the House of Commons as she is on a trip to Jordan and Saudi Arabia. Downing Street insisted she was not pre-empting the result of the inquiry by allowing Green to deputise for her.
May said on Tuesday night: “He is first secretary of state, he’s done prime minister’s questions before and I’m sure he’ll do a very good job tomorrow when he does the response.”
However, Labour MP John Mann told The Times newspaper: “It is clearly inappropriate. He should be spending his time clearing his name.”
Mann, who has campaigned on the issue of sxual harassment, is tabled to ask one of the first questions in today’s session.
Green is being investigated by Sue Gray, the head of propriety and ethics in the Cabinet Office.
The inquiry was launched on 1 November after Kate Maltby, a Conservative activist and historian, wrote an article which claimed Green had behaved inappropriately to her.
Some reports have suggested that the main investigation into Green has already concluded, with May already having seen the broad conclusions.
However, a spokesperson for Theresa May refused to answer questions on Wednesday as to what stage the investigation into Green was at, telling Business insider only that “the process is still ongoing”.
The first secretary has denied the claims against him, saying they were “untrue and deeply hurtful.”