Matt Hancock has hinted that he might only give a fraction of his reported £400,000 fee for appearing on I'm A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here! to charities.
The former health secretary, who came third in the ITV reality television show last month, has justified his absence from working for his constituents in West Suffolk by saying that he would donate sums to good causes.
After a major row was triggered when he entered the jungle last month, his spokesman said: "Matt will be making a donation to St Nicholas Hospice in Suffolk, and causes supporting dyslexia - including the British Dyslexia Association, off the back of his appearance.
“He will, of course, declare the amount he receives from the show to Parliament to ensure complete transparency, as normal."
The remarks had raised hopes that Mr Hancock might give a sizeable proportion of his reported £400,000 fee he received for going on the ITV programme to good causes.
However in an interview at the weekend, Mr Hancock appeared to hint that the donation might be far less.
Mr Hancock - who receives £84,144 a year as a MP - told Mail Plus: "I will be giving to charity more than what I would have earned for that time in Parliament to really important charities - St Nicholas Hospice in West Suffolk ... and also to dyslexia good causes."
If Mr Hancock were to base the donation on what he would have received as a MP for the 18 days he was in the jungle from Nov 9 to Nov 27, it would be £4,149.
The Liberal Democrats said that Mr Hancock should give all of the fee he receives to charity, rather than a figure based on his time in the jungle that works out at just one per cent of his reported fee.
Daisy Cooper, the party's deputy leader and health spokesman, said: "Hancock's chump change will come as cold comfort to the millions infuriated by his jungle adventure.
"His donation wouldn't even stretch to help more than a handful of children get a dyslexia assessment.
"To abandon constituents is one failure, to then donate just a tiny amount of his winnings is an insult.
"Matt Hancock should do the right thing, donate all of his fees to worthy causes and resign as a Member of Parliament. Every day he remains an MP is a loss for our democracy."
A source close to Mr Hancock said that it would be "wrong" to suggest that the former Cabinet minister will only give just over £4,000 to charities, and that the final sum will be more than this.
The source added that "Matt's book sale royalties will be donated to NHS charities and good causes related to dyslexia".
Mr Hancock, who won over viewers after initially being subjected to half a dozen Bushtucker Trials, arrived back from the jungle in Queensland, Australia last week.
He headed directly to the House of Commons to speak for his Dyslexia Screening and Teacher Training Bill.
He told MPs: "It's a pleasure to be here and to be clean and well-fed."
Lobby Akinnola, spokesman for Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice, said that it would be “completely pitiful” to give just one per cent of his fee to charity - adding: “No amount of money will bring back our loved ones but to see the man who was supposed to protect families like mine behave like this is a layer of grief I could never have imagined.
“It’s clear he has no care for those who paid the ultimate price because of his actions and those who loved them as we try and move forward with our lives.
“Whilst he’s raking in the money, we’re left reflecting on whether our loved ones might still be with us if only he wasn't so selfish.”
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