Cabinet reshuffle 'to be brought forward to give Matt Hancock 'dignified' exit' after affair bombshell sparks fury

MATT Hancock will be given a “dignified” departure from his job as plans for a Cabinet reshuffle are being brought forward.

We exclusively revealed the Health Secretary’s affair with aide Gina Coladangelo, including how they were caught on camera snogging on May 6.

🔵 Follow our Matt Hancock live blog for all the latest updates on his affair

Conservative sources have claimed that the Health Secretary could be given a lower-profile role after a number of high profile scandals.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been considering a reshuffle for months, and had decided recently to postpone it until the autumn.

But it could be brought forward to early next month, allowing the Prime Minister to move Hancock as soon as possible.

It comes as:

  • Hancock and Gina were pictured enjoying a 'flirty' dinner date two weeks after their ministry smooch
  • Hancock was spotted checking the coast was clear before the flirty cinch
  • Gina packed her car and left her marital home
  • Hancock's wife was spotted still wearing her wedding ring
  • Boris Johnson came under pressure to "pull the plug" as polls showed most Brits think Hancock should go
  • Police said they would not investigate him for breaching Covid laws
  • The BBC has been slammed for failing to mention that he was having an affair

Lawyers described how Mr Hancockmay have broken the law regarding coronavirus restrictions, although he admitted only to breaching guidance.

Hancock, 42, has not denied the affair after the extraordinary footage shows him groping millionaire lobbyist Gina Coladangelo, 43.

He was mercilessly mocked on social media admitting he broke his own social distancing rules during the passionate clinch.

Senior Tories are concerned that his hypocrisy will undermine support from the public for lockdown restrictions to continue.

Speaking to the Daily Mail one said: “I think you will see the Prime Minister bring forward his reshuffle quite quickly now.

“Hancock doesn't want to quit and the PM doesn't want to sack him, but it is quite clear that a dignified way has to be found to move him on.

“Hancock is going to find it very hard to persuade anyone to take him seriously on Covid now.

“But it's clear the PM wants to reward his loyalty so another job, preferably out of the public eye, is possible.

“It was always quite likely that he would be moved from health when the reshuffle came anyway, but now it's imperative.”

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden and Michael Gove have both been mentioned as a possible replacement for Hancock before the Prime Minister announced that he would not sack him.

Reportedly the Prime Minister has also considered Trade Secretary Liz Truss for the role.

Nadhim Zahawi had the backing of some Conservative MP’s after he organised the successful vaccinations rollout.

But he backed his boss, telling reporters: “The Secretary of State has apologised and has said everything he needs to say.”

Hancock has been under increasing pressure after former Downing Street adviser Dominic Commings revealed that he life about the testing of patients in care homes at the height of the pandemic.

Cummings told MP’s that the Health Secretary should have been sacked for “at least” 15 to 20 things, and that he lied to “everybody on multiple occasions.”

Mr Cummings also released WhatsApp messages, apparently from Mr Johnson, in which the Prime Minister calls the Health Secretary “hopeless”.

Tory sources claimed that Mr Johnson had already been planning to move Mr Hancock to a new role when the pandemic ended.

One said: “Hancock has been the face of the pandemic – you need a new face for the next phase.”

But the planned reshuffle was delayed, with the Prime Minister not holding a reshuffle since appointing his government after his 2019 election win.

Downing Street said PM Boris Johnson accepted Mr Hancock’s apology and considered the matter closed.

It comes after we revealed that the pair were “all over each other” again this week in the same ninth-floor Whitehall office.

On May 16 — with indoor hugging still banned — Hancock warned the country: “We should all be careful. We all know the risks. Of course there are people who have been yearning to have some physical contact. 

“You should do that carefully. If you’ve had both jabs more than two weeks ago, that’s much safer.” 

Hancock apologised for breaching social distancing on Friday with DoH non-executive director Gina, the wife of Oliver Bonas founder Oliver Tress.

Exclusive Sun images of the May 6 clinch shows Hancock checking no one is heading for his office by looking out of the door.

He appears to deliberately stand in front of the door as he welcomes millionaire Gina. 

They kiss passionately and he moved his hand to her bottom. 

Speaking of this week’s clinch in the same office, a source said: “It’s utterly shameless. It’s clear the relationship is far from a one-off.

“Lord knows how many times they have done it in the past. Only Hancock’s ministerial staff are allowed on the floor so it’s clear he thinks it’s some sort of safe haven.

“He’s well aware of the cameras. But the bottom line is they just don’t seem to care.

“I’m told the news went round DoH staff really quickly.

“Employees there were telling each other ‘they’re at it again’. The hypocrisy is disgusting.”

Hancock — who has three children with wife of 15 years, Martha, 44 — has made no public apology to her.

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