David Cameron accused over ‘stitched together’ Lynton Crosby memo

Conservative party election strategist denies discussed tobacco issues with PM or Health Secretary

Whitehall Editor

David Cameron was accused of using Britain’s most senior civil servant to release “post-dated” ethical guidelines to help clear him of allegations that his controversial election adviser Lynton Crosby lobbied ministers on behalf of private clients.

Sir Jeremy Heywood, the Cabinet Secretary, released details of the “principles of engagement” between Mr Crosby and the Conservative Party that appeared to suggest that he had agreed not to use his position to advance the interests of his firm’s other clients.

But under questioning it emerged that civil servants had had no involvement in drawing up the terms of the deal – or indeed knew whether they had been written down at the time of his hiring. A Conservative source said the published principles “captured what was agreed at the time Lynton was hired”.

Labour are expected to write to Sir Jeremy today to ask when he first knew about the document and request details of all Mr Crosby’s visits to Downing Street. “This memorandum is a mystifying document,” said a Labour source. “It appears to have been stitched together at the last minute and has been published without a date, details or a list of people who were party to it. It leaves more questions than it answers.”

The row overshadowed attempts by Mr Crosby to put an end to damaging allegations that he used his position advising the Conservatives to advance the interests of the tobacco giant Philip Morris, for whom his company also works. He denied that he had ever had “any conversation or discussion” with Mr Cameron about plain cigarettes packaging – but declined to publish a list of his other lobbying clients – unlike the majority of similar lobbying companies.

In his previous comments on the controversy Mr Cameron has insisted he had not been “lobbied” by his election strategist, but declined on many occasions to say whether he’d had a conversation with him about tobacco issues.

In a statement issued by his company CTF Partners, Mr Crosby went further saying: “What the PM said should be enough for any ordinary person but to avoid any doubt or speculation let me be clear. At no time have I had any conversation or discussion with or lobbied the Prime Minister, or indeed the Health Secretary or the Health minister, on plain packaging or tobacco issues.”

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Tax Manager / Accountant

£35 - £50k DOE: Guru Careers: A Tax Manager / Accountant (ACA / CA / CTA) is n...

Recruitment Genius: Telemarketing Operative

£6 - £15 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join a well e...

Recruitment Genius: Data Scientist

£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Full Stack Software Developer - Javascript

£18000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Day In a Page

Turkey-Kurdish conflict: Obama's deal with Ankara is a betrayal of Syrian Kurds and may not even weaken Isis

US betrayal of old ally brings limited reward

Since the accord, the Turks have only waged war on Kurds while no US bomber has used Incirlik airbase, says Patrick Cockburn
VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but doubts linger over security

'A gift from Egypt to the rest of the world'

VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but is it really needed?
Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, applauds a man who clearly has more important things on his mind
The male menopause and intimations of mortality

Aches, pains and an inkling of mortality

So the male menopause is real, they say, but what would the Victorians, 'old' at 30, think of that, asks DJ Taylor
Man Booker Prize 2015: Anna Smaill - How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?

'How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?'

Man Booker Prize nominee Anna Smaill on the rise of Kiwi lit
Bettany Hughes interview: The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems

Bettany Hughes interview

The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems
Art of the state: Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China

Art of the state

Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China
Mildreds and Vanilla Black have given vegetarian food a makeover in new cookbooks

Vegetarian food gets a makeover

Long-time vegetarian Holly Williams tries to recreate some of the inventive recipes in Mildreds and Vanilla Black's new cookbooks
The haunting of Shirley Jackson: Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?

The haunting of Shirley Jackson

Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?
Bill Granger recipes: Heading off on holiday? Try out our chef's seaside-inspired dishes...

Bill Granger's seaside-inspired recipes

These dishes are so easy to make, our chef is almost embarrassed to call them recipes
Ashes 2015: Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

A woefully out-of-form Michael Clarke embodies his team's fragile Ashes campaign, says Michael Calvin
Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen