British billionaire entrepreneur James Dyson has found himself at the heart of a political row triggered when private text messages exchanged between him and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson were leaked amid a wider probe into lobbying involving the government and the private sector.
British billionaire entrepreneur James Dyson has waded into the scandal surrounding “damaging” leaked texts between him and Boris Johnson, dismissing accusations that his actions had been inappropriate.
The March 2020 messages to Dyson revealed the UK Prime Minister assuring the businessman his employees would not be required to pay additional taxes if they came to the UK to make ventilators for the National Health Service (NHS) amid the pandemic.
Offering his first comment on the political row that gained traction after the texts emerged last week in a BBC/Kuenssberg story, the British inventor and industrial designer slammed the national broadcaster for “grotesque mischaracterization” when describing the connections between him and the Conservative Party.
“The BBC’s characterisation of me as a prominent Conservative donor, or supporter, leveraging a position of power to extract favours from the Prime Minister, is completely untrue. I have met Boris Johnson only three times… I have not attended any Conservative social events,” wrote Dyson in the Daily Telegraph.
The inventor best known as the brain behind the Dual Cyclone bagless vacuum cleaner insisted that it had been “entirely the right thing” for the UK Prime Minister to message him directly about proposed changes to the tax status of his employees making ventilators during the pandemic.