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1 May, 2023 12:11

Former UK PM contests $15,000 bill over ‘missing’ items

Bathrobes and slippers reportedly disappeared from the residence occupied by then-foreign secretary Liz Truss last summer
Former UK PM contests $15,000 bill over ‘missing’ items

Former UK Prime Minister Liz Truss is facing a hefty bill for food and drink as well as for items missing from the estate she lived in during her pre-Downing Street tenure as Britain’s Foreign Secretary, The Daily Mail has reported. The Conservative politician is allegedly disputing part of the bill.

In an article on Saturday, the Mail claimed that the UK government had demanded that Truss shell out £12,000 ($15,000). Among the items which had reportedly disappeared last summer from Chevening, the state’s 17th century grace-and-favor country home, were bathrobes and slippers.

According to the paper, Truss had gathered with close aides on multiple occasions at Chevening last August as she prepared to take over the reins at Downing Street from outgoing premier Boris Johnson.

An anonymous source told the Mail that “Liz used Chevening as a mini Number Ten, holding meetings with her inner circle, which often turned into parties in the evening.

Now the cabinet allegedly insists that she cover the costs incurred during what officials have reportedly characterized as a “series of summer parties” which had nothing to do with state business.

Truss’s spokesperson told the media outlet that “Liz always paid for the costs of her personal guests at Chevening.” Her representative insisted that the invoice was made up of both “costs for her personally and costs for official Government business” involving senior civil servants.

The latter constitutes the lion’s share of the bill, the ex-premier’s spokesperson noted, adding that Truss had asked for these two categories to be separated.

Her representative also clarified that Truss had requested an “accurate invoice” before she agreed to settle it.

Truss’ time at Chevening last summer was at the center of another story reported on by The Guardian in December 2022. The paper claimed at the time that staff working at the mansion had found white powder, which turned out to be cocaine, after at least two parties attended by her.

The newspaper stressed, however, that there was no indication that Truss herself had used the drug or had been aware that someone at Chevening was consuming it.

The former prime minister, for her part, dismissed the allegations as “categorically untrue.

Truss, who assumed Britain’s top job in early September 2022, had to step down on October 20, thus becoming the shortest-serving prime minister in the country’s history. Her downfall was preceded by an attempt to alleviate soaring inflation with a mini-budget put forward by her cabinet. This, however, failed, sending the markets into turmoil.