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BORIS Johnson has refused to deny trying to get his wife Carrie a £100,000 post at the Foreign Office in 2018.
There have been calls for an investigation into the allegations.
The claims were first made in a book by the Tory peer Lord Ashcroft. More detail emerged in the Times last week, although the paper withdrew the article following an intervention from No 10.
Mr Johnson was challenged at Prime Minister’s Questions over the issue.
Labour MP Chris Elmore asked the Tory leader if he had “ever considered the appointment of his current spouse to a Government post or to any organisation in one of the Royal Households.
“Be honest Prime Minister, yes or no?”
Mr Johnson swerved the question: “I know why the party opposite wants to talk about non-existent jobs in the media because they don’t want to talk about what is going on in the real world.
“I’m proud to say actually that we now have 620,000 people more in payroll employment than before the pandemic began which would never have been possible if we had listened to the Right Honourable Gentleman opposite [Sir Keir Starmer].”
According to the initial report in the Times on Saturday, Mr Johnson attempted to hire Carrie, who was his girlfriend at the time, as his chief-of-staff at the Foreign Office.
Subsequent reports allege he spoke with aides about getting the now Ms Johnson jobs after taking over at Number 10.
The Daily Mirror said the Prime Minister asked about potential roles at the COP26 summit or with the royal family.
Asked about the claims, Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab told Sky News: “These attacks on Carrie are deeply unsavoury.
“The allegations that have been made have been roundly responded to as flawed. Those are matters for No 10 and for Carrie to answer.”
The SNP has written to the UK Cabinet Secretary demanding an investigation.
The party’s Cabinet Office spokesman, Brendan O’Hara said: “Given the stench of cronyism surrounding the Tories at Westminster, and the multiple occasions in which Boris Johnson has lied, cheated, wilfully broken the law, and offered senior roles to close allies and friends, it is incumbent on the Cabinet Secretary to take this latest allegation seriously,”
Labour MP Chris Bryant said it would have been "manifestly corrupt" for Ms Johnson to have been given a job at the Foreign Office while Mr Johnson was Foreign Secretary.