16 November 2021, 06:52 | Updated: November 16, 2021, 3:23 p.m.
Downing Street has declined to comment after two women, including a Tory MP, accused Prime Minister Stanley Johnson’s father of touching them inappropriately.
Caroline Nokes said the eldest Mr Johnson hit her hard on the back and said she had “a nice seat” in 2003 before running for Tory MP.
Ms Nokes’ claim led Ailbhe Rea, a New Statesman journalist, to accuse Mr Johnson of “groping” her at the 2019 Conservative Party conference.
A No. 10 spokesman said today: “I will not be drawn into specific allegations against a private individual.
“Of course, we want everyone to feel, in any case, that they have been subjected to any kind of harassment, come forward and report them to the relevant authorities.”
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Ms Nokes – MP for Romsey and Southampton North and chair of the Commons Women and Equality Committee – suggested that the Prime Minister’s father touched her inappropriately during the Tory party conference in Blackpool in 2003, before Mr Johnson ran for the Teignbridge seat in Devon in 2005.
“I have had male MPs stick their hands on my back in the Strangers’ Bar (in Parliament),” she said during a panel discussion.
“And I remember a really prominent man slapping me on the back about as hard as he could and saying, ‘Oh, Romsey, you have a nice seat.’
“Stanley Johnson did it to me before the ’05 election, so it was Blackpool … 2003/4.
She added that she was ashamed that she had not done anything about it, but added: “Now I would probably.”
Johnson declined to comment on her claim to Sky News, except to say he “has no recollection of Caroline Nokes” at all.
In response to the allegation on Twitter, Ms. Rea said: “Stanley Johnson also groped after me for a party at the 2019 Conservative Conference.
“I’m grateful to Caroline Nokes for shouting something that none of us should have to put up with, not least from the Prime Minister’s father.”
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Johnson lost the campaign to become a Member of Parliament in 2005, but had served as a Conservative Member of the European Parliament between 1979 and 1984.
Johnson, now 81, did not respond immediately when contacted by the PA news agency about both allegations.
But with regard to the initial indictment, he told Sky News: “I can not remember Caroline Nokes at all. But here it is … and no answer.”