Is Whitehall hiring ANOTHER pal of Carrie Symonds? Boris Johnson’s fiancee faces fresh controversy over her influence as a friend of hers is considered for top job
- Dominic Dyer has stepped down from his role as chief of the Badger Trust
- He is in the running for a job as an adviser to the Government on the badger cull
- Nimco Ali got a job at the Home Office without the role being publicly advertised
The Prime Minister’s fiancee Carrie Symonds faces a fresh controversy over her growing influence at No 10 as a friend of hers is considered for a top job.
Dominic Dyer has stepped down from his role as chief executive of the Badger Trust and is in the running for a position as an adviser to the Government on the badger cull.
Friends: Carrie Symonds with Mr Dyer
The appointment of Miss Symonds’s friend – who, like her, opposes the cull – has not been confirmed but the timing of his resignation has led critics to ask whether he is being lined up for the role.
It would delight environmentalists if he gets the job but dismay farmers who support killing badgers to stop the spread of bovine tuberculosis.
Miss Symonds faced accusations of intervening in a decision to stop the badger cull in Derbyshire last year after Mr Dyer met her and Boris Johnson.
Earlier this year she was claimed to be involved in a feud with Dominic Cummings that resulted in the Prime Minister’s special adviser leaving Downing Street.
Miss Symonds was reportedly branded ‘Princess Nut Nut’ by opponents in No 10.
She has also faced claims that her influence resulted in another of her circle getting a job.
Nimco Ali, a close friend of Miss Symonds and Mr Johnson, and godmother to their son Wilf, got a position at the Home Office without the role being publicly advertised.
Mr Dyer confirmed yesterday he was seeking a role on the Bovine Tuberculosis Partnership for England, which will include farmers.
Members of the new panel, due to be announced this month, will be paid £250 a day plus expenses for up to 30 days a year.
Close: Miss Symonds with Nimco Ali
A prominent farming figure, who wished to remain anonymous, said: ‘Dyer has no academic background or scientific experience relevant to the role, but the only qualification that seems to be important is that he is a “friend of Carrie”.’
Another commentator said: ‘The Government needs to be careful to show it is following due process – it does seem Carrie has far too much control.’
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which will chair the panel, said: ‘Any appointments will follow due process.’