Responding to reports in The Observer that reveal Mayor Boris Johnson dined at Rupert Murdoch’s Mayfair home last Tuesday night, a spokesman for Hacked Off said:
After the revelations unearthed during Leveson, you might think that senior politicians had learnt their lesson about holding secret assignations with newspaper bosses. Yet it appears that Boris Johnson just doesn’t get it.
It beggars belief that anyone could describe a dinner between the most powerful politician in London and the head of News Corporation, the company at the centre of the phone-hacking scandal, as a ‘private arrangement’.
The Mayor is also in charge of the Metropolitan Police Authority and it is totally inappropriate for him to be meeting Mr Murdoch in private while the Met are carrying out an investigation into Murdoch companies.
The Mayor’s attempt to keep the event out of the limelight suggests he may prefer to keep his closeness to Mr Murdoch a secret.
We urge all politicians to comply with the Leveson recommendations and publish full and up-to-date accounts of their meetings with media proprietors and editors. Given their past record of excessive closeness, and all the harm it has done, that is the very least the public can expect from those who represent them.