Matt Hancock’s girlfriend Gina Coladangelo QUIT her charity job after two months before she flew out

REVEALED: Matt Hancock’s girlfriend Gina Coladangelo QUIT her charity job after just two months before she flew out to support him in the I’m a Celebrity jungle – amid growing speculation he may resign as an MP so they can launch new media career

  • Gina Coladangelo, 45, is preparing to step into the spotlight in ITV’s I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!
  • Matt Hancock’s girlfriend and former aide will be on hand to greet him once he is evicted from the camp 
  • The news is sure to lead to speculation that the couple are planning a media career outside of politics
  • She joins Mike Tindall’s wife Zara Phillips and Chris Moyles’s partner Tiffany Austin in a Queensland hotel

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Gina Coladangelo, Matt Hancock’s girlfriend, has just stepped into the spotlight in Australia – awaiting the moment the former Health Secretary leaves I’m A Celebrity.

The former parliamentary aide will be on hand to greet him whenever he is evicted from the jungle — joining Zara Phillips and Chris Moyles’s partner Tiffany Austin at the Marriott hotel in Surfers Paradise, on Queensland’s Gold Coast.

However it can be revealed that Coladangelo, 45, didn’t need to take leave from work to be there, because she has quit her job in marketing and communications for a charity, after spending less than two months in the role.

Records at Companies House show that she joined UK Youth as a director on September 22 and quit on November 2, shortly after Hancock’s controversial TV appearance was announced.

The news is sure to lead to speculation that the couple are planning a media career outside of politics, and that Hancock may leave his role as an MP.

Gina Coladangelo, Matt Hancock¿s girlfriend, has just stepped into the spotlight in Australia - awaiting the moment the former Health Secretary leaves I'm A Celebrity.

Gina Coladangelo, Matt Hancock’s girlfriend, has just stepped into the spotlight in Australia – awaiting the moment the former Health Secretary leaves I’m A Celebrity.

The former parliamentary aide will be on hand to greet Hancock (pictured) the moment he is evicted from the jungle

The former parliamentary aide will be on hand to greet Hancock (pictured) the moment he is evicted from the jungle

Matt Hancock has attracted praise for being a good sport after participating in one bushtucker trial after another (Pictured: Hancock tarred with feathers in one of the trials)

Matt Hancock has attracted praise for being a good sport after participating in one bushtucker trial after another (Pictured: Hancock tarred with feathers in one of the trials)

Hancock (left) resigned from his ministerial post in June last year after he was caught breaching social distancing rules by kissing Coladangelo, an old friend from university, in his ministerial office.

Hancock (left) resigned from his ministerial post in June last year after he was caught breaching social distancing rules by kissing Coladangelo, an old friend from university, in his ministerial office.

Some suggest they are hoping to launch themselves as a high-profile media pair and pick up work in television and radio. The disgraced former Health Secretary is being paid a reported £400,000 to appear in I’m A Celebrity . . . Get Me Out of Here, dwarfing his £84,000 a year salary from Westminster.

He resigned from his ministerial post in June last year after he was caught breaching social distancing rules by kissing Coladangelo, an old friend from university, in his ministerial office.

At the time, she was employed as the communications director for Oliver Bonas, the firm founded by her husband, but also working part-time with Hancock at the Department of Health. She left both jobs after news of the affair emerged.

The daughter of a millionaire businessman, she had a successful career in PR and lobbying after completing a degree in PPE (philosophy, politics and economics) at Oxford University.

The affair ended Hancock’s 15-year marriage to wife Martha. They have three children. He said in the jungle: ‘It was really tough. I messed up, and I ’fessed up. I resigned and it’s no excuse, but I fell in love, right? That also had a lot of other consequences, obviously.’

His fellow campmate Babatunde Aleshe, 34, replied: ‘You didn’t just “fall in love”. You were grabbing booty, bruv!’

Hancock added that the best thing about being kicked out would be ‘seeing her on the bridge’.

The charity declined to say why Coladangelo left, or whose decision it was for her to leave the unpaid post.

Critics are furious that Hancock has turned his back on his work just as an inquiry into the handling of the pandemic by the Government gets underway. He has been stripped of the government whip as a result.

Ready to fly: Matt Hancock's girlfriend Gina Coladangelo was pictured at Heathrow Airport on her way to Australia, awaiting the moment she is reunited with the I'm A Celeb star

Ready to fly: Matt Hancock’s girlfriend Gina Coladangelo was pictured at Heathrow Airport on her way to Australia, awaiting the moment she is reunited with the I’m A Celeb star

Coladangelo was seen at London’s Heathrow on Tuesday evening before making the 24-hour journey to Brisbane, to meet Matt, 44, who confessed to his campmates last week to ‘falling in love’ with his former aide.

The mother-of-three flew business class and was met by a member of the ITV team but refused to comment when asked about Matt’s stint in the jungle so far.

A source told MailOnline: ‘Gina remained tightlipped at the airport – but she smiled when asked if she was looking forward to flying to Australia and seeing Matt again.

‘She looked glamorous in a stylish emerald green coat that she wore over the top of an all-black outfit with comfortable trainers.

‘Walking through departures, she looked nothing but relaxed ahead of the long trip to Australia, where she will finally be reunited with Matt.’

MailOnline understands that ITV offers to fly one family member and friend to Australia via business class, giving them the full celebrity treatment. 

Ms Coladangelo flew with Singapore Airlines, known to be one of the most luxurious in the world and her business class flight is believed to have cost over £11,000. 

Relaxed: The mother-of-three flew business class and was met by a member of the ITV team but refused to comment when asked about Matt's stint in the jungle so far

Relaxed: The mother-of-three flew business class and was met by a member of the ITV team but refused to comment when asked about Matt’s stint in the jungle so far 

'I fell in love': Matt said the best thing about being eliminated from I'm A Celeb will be seeing girlfriend Gina, who will be waiting for him at the end of the show's famous red carpeted bridge

‘I fell in love’: Matt said the best thing about being eliminated from I’m A Celeb will be seeing girlfriend Gina, who will be waiting for him at the end of the show’s famous red carpeted bridge 

Off she goes: Gina was seen at London's Heathrow on Tuesday evening, wheeling her luggage, which included two large suitcases, through departures

Off she goes: Gina was seen at London’s Heathrow on Tuesday evening, wheeling her luggage, which included two large suitcases, through departures

Jetsetter: A source told MailOnline: 'Gina remained tightlipped at the airport ¿ but she smiled when asked if she was looking forward to flying to Australia and seeing Matt again'

Jetsetter: A source told MailOnline: ‘Gina remained tightlipped at the airport – but she smiled when asked if she was looking forward to flying to Australia and seeing Matt again’ 

Gina was seen at London's Heathrow on Tuesday evening before making the 24-hour journey to Brisbane, to meet Matt, who confessed to his campmates last week to 'falling in love' with his former aid

Gina was seen at London’s Heathrow on Tuesday evening before making the 24-hour journey to Brisbane, to meet Matt, who confessed to his campmates last week to ‘falling in love’ with his former aid

Hancock confessed to falling in love with her when quizzed by campmates over breaching social distancing rules. The politician said: ‘That’s been hard. I obviously brought it on myself, so yeah… it’s been tough.’

Since being in the jungle, Hancock has been stung by a scorpion, eaten a camel penis and sheep vagina, and completed six Bushtucker trials. 

But at no point has Gina left the Tory MP’s mind, with Matt referring to her on several occasions, even calling the businesswoman by her full name, Regina. 

Speaking in the Bush Telegraph, Hancock added: ‘There I was sat in the comfy red chair and I felt like I was on Mastermind being asked all these questions.’

Journalist and broadcaster Charlene White also joined in on quizzing Hancock, asking the MP for West Suffolk: ‘Why do you think Tory Party members went for the less experienced?’

Hancock said: ‘I think that’s all about how Boris [Johnson] got kicked out. It was all about people seeing Rishi as wielding the knife against Boris.’

White, 42, continued: ‘So they decided to, one could argue, punish the entire country, by putting someone in place who was less experienced?’

Hancock replied: ‘That implies a malign motive, which isn’t fair. But they definitely put the disloyalty to Boris as a negative, as a bigger factor.’

Comedian Seann Walsh, who was a late arrival to the jungle along with Hancock, asked: ‘Were you a Boris die-hard?’

Hancock responded: ‘Look, I was very supportive of him, but it was time. When it was time to go, it was time to go.’

Referring to former PM Mr Johnson returning to the UK shortly after Ms Truss’s resignation, White asked: ‘When he flew back from his holiday in the Caribbean, what was your first thought?’

Hancock revealed: ‘I texted him and I said, “You know I think you’re wonderful but it’s not your time. The best thing for the country is that you should back Rishi and that we should get him in post as soon as possible”.’

Elsewhere in Tuesday evening’s episode, Boy George was seen chanting during the latest Bushtucker trial, which he had to complete alongside Babatunde and Chris Moyles in order to earn meals for camp.

The public voted on Monday for the trio to take part in Angel Of Agony, sparing Hancock who had completed six consecutive trials since joining the reality show.

During the trial, the Culture Club star, 61, began chanting while navigating a box full of critters to find a star before handing it to comedian Aleshe, 36, who then apologised profusely for dropping it.

Boy George continued to use his loud chanting to help him through the rest of the challenge as he attempted to unravel two further stars in a chamber full of snakes.

Meanwhile, broadcaster Moyles, 48, became agitated by the critters that were falling on him, saying: ‘Why did I wear shorts.’

By the end of the challenge the trio has won just three out of the 11 available stars, with Aleshe saying: ‘I apologise man, this loss was on me.’

To which presenter Declan Donnelly said: ‘That was really frustrating to watch, it must have been frustrating to be a part of. Babatunde what happened?’

Aleshe replied: ‘Look man, I had butterfingers today. I tried my best. Every time I got near to the top and I tried to pass it to Chris it just dropped. I’m annoyed at myself.’

When the trio returned from the trial, Aleshe said in the Bush Telegraph: ‘I definitely feel like I let the team down, my campmates down… I just couldn’t get the hang of the trial today.’

Boy George said: ‘I was proud of myself for overcoming my terror. Then I wanted to cry after.’

While Moyles added: ‘I don’t think there should be a next time for me.’

I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! continues on ITV.

Matt Hancock decided to enter the I’m a Celebrity Jungle after Rishi Sunak ‘snub’, says writer – as it’s revealed he will donate ‘more than his MP’s salary’ to charity after show and it is claimed he got ‘trench foot’

By Jessica Warren, Sarah Packer and Stewart Carr for MailOnline

Matt Hancock decided to enter the I’m a Celebrity Jungle after being ‘snubbed’ by Rishi Sunak, says his book writer — as it is revealed that he will donate more than his MP’s salary to charity after the show.

Mr Hancock’s controversial booking on I’m A Celebrity was defended by ITV bosses, who maintain contestants are plucked ‘from all walks of life.’ 

The former Health Secretary, 44, appeared to be snubbed by the new Prime Minister last month as he congratulated him outside Downing Street with other MPs. 

Matt Hancock decided to enter the I'm a Celebrity Jungle after being 'snubbed' by Rishi Sunak (pictured with partner Gina Coladangelo)

Matt Hancock decided to enter the I’m a Celebrity Jungle after being ‘snubbed’ by Rishi Sunak (pictured with partner Gina Coladangelo)

Isabel Oakeshott — who has written Mr Hancock’s book — said that his decision to join the jungle came very soon after that moment.

She also claimed that the former Health Secretary, who has reportedly got ‘trench foot’, believes the Tory party is heading out of power and is thinking long-term about his own career instead.

The MP for West Suffolk had the Tory whip removed following the announcement of his decision to go on the hit reality TV show, and stated that he had no expectations of returning to government.

Mr Hancock has faced criticism for taking an estimated £350,000 pay deal for his appearance on the show, with his spokesperson since confirming that the politician will be donating more than his MPs salary to charity.

They added that he will use the platform to talk about his dyslexia campaign, with donations going to St Nicholas Hospice in his constituency and causes supporting dyslexia.

Ms Oakeshott, 47, told TalkTV that being snubbed by Mr Sunak was ‘incredibly humiliating’ for Mr Hancock.

‘That clip went viral,’ she said. ‘Matt’s decision [to join the show] came pretty soon after that.’

She added: ‘There is another side to Matt Hancock, you’ve got to give him credit for spirit, he’s always up for stuff and I think he’s just going to go for it.

‘He knows this could go wrong but in another way; can things really get worse for him?’

Describing his decision to join the ITV show, Mr Hancock wrote in The Sun: ‘Some may think I’ve lost my marbles or had one too many drinks, swapping the comfortable surroundings of Westminster and West Suffolk for the extreme conditions of the Australian outback, going where there will be few creature comforts, not enough food, and a load of physical tasks involving snakes, spiders and plenty of other creepy-crawlies.

‘While there will undoubtedly be those who think I shouldn’t go, I think it’s a great opportunity to talk directly to people who aren’t always interested in politics, even if they care very much about how our country’s run.’

ITV bosses defend signing Matt Hancock for I’m A Celebrity insisting they cast ‘from all walks of life’ 

Matt Hancock’s controversial booking on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here! has been defended by ITV bosses, who maintain contestants are plucked ‘from all walks of life.’

The former Health Security’s shock signing was blasted by fellow MPs and members of his West Suffolk constituency after it was confirmed he would be competing on the primetime series alongside stars including singer Boy George, 61, rugby ace Mike Tindall, 44, DJ Chris Moyles, 48, and Coronation Street actress Sue Cleaver, 59.

Hancock, 44, who has been stripped of his Conservative Party whip, last night attempted to justify his decision, saying he was intending to promote his dyslexia campaign in the Aussie jungle, as well as talk to people ‘who aren’t always interested in politics.’

He also boldly claimed he would still be reached on ‘urgent constituency matters’ – despite being 10,270 miles away.

However, the father-of-three has been accused of ‘cashing in’ on the pandemic by families affected by Covid who believe he only signed up for the reported £350,000 fee.

But speaking to MailOnline on the show’s set in Australia, Tweed Shire, executive producer Olly Nash defended Hancock’s signing, saying the ITV series, which starts this Sunday, has a history of featuring politicians.

He said: ‘It’s always an individual’s choice to come into camp and at any point a celebrity can say I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!

‘Nobody has to do the show, nobody has to stay in camp, and nobody has to do the trials. It’s up to any celebrity to make that choice.

‘It doesn’t matter who they are, what their past is, what their history is, once you get an ensemble cast in here you never know how everybody is going to gel so it’s a really hard question to answer.

‘It’s always great to have a good ensemble cast – that’s really the basis of putting everybody together. We cast people from all walks of life and always have done.

‘We have politicians going back years. You never know when they get in what they’re going to do.’

Hancock landed in Brisbane on Wednesday morning and will be a late arrival in camp alongside comedian Seann Walsh.

The pair have been pitted together as they have both been branded ‘love-rats’ following high profile affairs.

Walsh, 36, was caught kissing his Strictly dance partner Katya Jones behind his girlfriend Rebecca Humphries back in October 2018, while Hancock was forced to quit as health secretary in June 2021 after he was pictured breaking his own lockdown rules and kissing his married aide Gina Coladangelo.

Hancock is now a huge favourite to receive the bulk of the show’s infamous Bushtucker Trials, with viewers desperate to see him squirm.

Indeed, even some of his fellow politicians, who are appalled by his decision to desert his West Suffolk constituency during the country’s financial crisis, are reportedly keen to vote for him.

I’m A Celeb executive producer Nash says the Bushtucker Trials will be even more intimidating this year now the series has returned to its traditional home Down Under, having been based in Wales for the last two series due to the pandemic.

He added: ‘We are filming more than we’ve ever done before and there will be more elements over more shows.

‘Not all celebrities will be in this camp at the beginning of the show. We have got some of the biggest trials that we’ve ever done this year.

‘In Wales we couldn’t really do stuff that was outside because of the weather and the big storm but this year we can be outside again. We have more big rigs; we have more big, slimy, dirty trials, and a lot more competitive trials.

‘There are 24 this year and there are 21 shows.

‘On the last day the final three each take on a trial. Cyclone is absolutely back.’ 

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The former Health Security’s shock signing was blasted by fellow MPs and members of his West Suffolk constituency after it was confirmed he would be competing on the primetime series alongside stars including singer Boy George, 61, rugby ace Mike Tindall, 44, DJ Chris Moyles, 48, and Coronation Street actress Sue Cleaver, 59.

Hancock, 44, who has been stripped of his Conservative Party whip, last night attempted to justify his decision, saying he was intending to promote his dyslexia campaign in the Aussie jungle, as well as talk to people ‘who aren’t always interested in politics.’

He also boldly claimed he would still be reached on ‘urgent constituency matters’ – despite being 10,270 miles away.

However, the father-of-three has been accused of ‘cashing in’ on the pandemic by families affected by Covid who believe he only signed up for the reported £350,000 fee.

But speaking to MailOnline on the show’s set in Australia, Tweed Shire, executive producer Olly Nash defended Hancock’s signing, saying the ITV series, which starts this Sunday, has a history of featuring politicians.

He said: ‘It’s always an individual’s choice to come into camp and at any point a celebrity can say I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!

‘Nobody has to do the show, nobody has to stay in camp, and nobody has to do the trials. It’s up to any celebrity to make that choice.

‘It doesn’t matter who they are, what their past is, what their history is, once you get an ensemble cast in here you never know how everybody is going to gel so it’s a really hard question to answer.

‘It’s always great to have a good ensemble cast – that’s really the basis of putting everybody together. We cast people from all walks of life and always have done.

‘We have politicians going back years. You never know when they get in what they’re going to do.’

Hancock landed in Brisbane on Wednesday morning and will be a late arrival in camp alongside comedian Seann Walsh.

The pair have been pitted together as they have both been branded ‘love-rats’ following high profile affairs.

Walsh, 36, was caught kissing his Strictly dance partner Katya Jones behind his girlfriend Rebecca Humphries back in October 2018, while Hancock was forced to quit as health secretary in June 2021 after he was pictured breaking his own lockdown rules and kissing his married aide Gina Coladangelo.

Hancock is now a huge favourite to receive the bulk of the show’s infamous Bushtucker Trials, with viewers desperate to see him squirm.

Indeed, even some of his fellow politicians, who are appalled by his decision to desert his West Suffolk constituency during the country’s financial crisis, are reportedly keen to vote for him.

I’m A Celeb executive producer Nash says the Bushtucker Trials will be even more intimidating this year now the series has returned to its traditional home Down Under, having been based in Wales for the last two series due to the pandemic.

He added: ‘We are filming more than we’ve ever done before and there will be more elements over more shows.

‘Not all celebrities will be in this camp at the beginning of the show. We have got some of the biggest trials that we’ve ever done this year.

‘In Wales we couldn’t really do stuff that was outside because of the weather and the big storm but this year we can be outside again. We have more big rigs; we have more big, slimy, dirty trials, and a lot more competitive trials.

‘There are 24 this year and there are 21 shows.

‘On the last day the final three each take on a trial. Cyclone is absolutely back.’

A spokesperson for the former Health Secretary told MailOnline: ‘Matt will be donating more than his MPs salary to charity.

‘This is an amazing opportunity to engage with the public and talk about issues he really cares about — including his dyslexia campaign,’ they said.

‘Matt is still working on constituency matters and will continue to do so up until he goes into the jungle. Producers have agreed that Matt can communicate with his team throughout the show if there’s an urgent constituency matter.

‘Matt will also be making a donation to St Nicholas Hospice in his constituency and causes supporting dyslexia, off the back of his appearance.’

They added: ‘There isn’t a day that goes by that Matt doesn’t think about those who died or about those who lost loved ones to Covid. Matt lost a family member himself to Covid.

‘Matt worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to get the first vaccine in the world. It was his mission to make sure there was enough vaccine to vaccinate the whole of the UK.

‘The vaccine programme was a huge success and helped the UK escape the pandemic faster than almost any other country in the world.’

‘Decisions were always guided by the science, in an attempt to protect the public and to save as many lives as possible.’ 

Bereaved families who lost loved ones to Covid launched a petition to demand he is removed from the hit ITV show, which has garnered more than 17,000 signatures. Mr Hancock had to quit government after he was caught flouting his own lockdown rules by kissing married Ms Coladangelo in his office.

The petition, launched by pressure group Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice, reads: ‘Families were ripped apart by Matt Hancock’s actions, and turning on the TV to see him being paraded around as a joke is sickening.

Hancock (right) appeared to be resolutely ignored by new PM Rishi Sunak (centre) last week, as he waited outside Downing Street with other MPs to congratulate him

Hancock (right) appeared to be resolutely ignored by new PM Rishi Sunak (centre) last week, as he waited outside Downing Street with other MPs to congratulate him

‘If he had any respect for families who lost loved ones to Covid-19, he would be sharing his private emails with the Covid Inquiry, not eating bugs on TV.’ 

A separate probe is being launched into whether he should receive his taxpayer-funded £84,144 salary while in the jungle, as questions are raised over whether he followed the rules on seeking jobs within two years of leaving office. 

‘Fame junkie’ Mr Hancock has already landed in Australia for I’m A Celebrity, however, and brazenly insisted he will still be serving his West Suffolk constituents – 10,270 miles away in the jungle camp. 

But the former minister is in for a tough ride as MPs and his rivals in Parliament are plotting to ensure he is forced to do gruesome Bushtucker Trials ‘every night’.

Writer Ms Oakeshott also told TalkTv that she will ‘100 per cent’ make time to see Mr Hancock in the jungle, adding: ‘Don’t we all want to see him suffer a bit, having to eat bits of kangaroo and God knows what else? I do.’

She added that there isn’t ‘a person in the country’ that the pandemic did not impact. 

‘I imagine he will get a bit of a hard time from the other contestants and he’ll have to justify his approach, but that is a very well trodden route for him, he absolutely has his lines to take and I doubt that he’ll deviate from that,’ she said.

‘He is somebody that is absolutely convinced that he responded in the best possible way he could with the information that was there available tat the time. I don’t think he’ll be expressing any regrets, let’s put it that way.’

Ms Oakeshott added that while she thinks Mr Hancock loves his constituency, he has already taken part in another reality TV show, SAS Who Dares Wins, and could be ‘diversifying’.

‘He’s not on a fast track back to the cabinet as I think perhaps he initially hoped after his resignation, that he might be brought back,’ she added.

‘Politics is incredibly volatile and things can change in a short space of time. There is a general view among Tory MP’s that they are heading towards opposition, so I think he is thinking more broadly about his future and what he’s doing next.

‘It is a bit difficult for him how his constituents will react on his own patch and he’s very mindful of that.’ 

Landing in Brisbane this morning ahead of a week in isolation, Mr Hancock denied he had ‘lost his marbles’. 

Instead, he insisted he was flying Down Under so he could ‘go to where the people are – not to sit in ivory towers in Westminster’ – and claimed he will ‘promote his dyslexia campaign’ and make a donation to a hospice – but not his entire estimated £350,000 pay deal from ITV.

Incredibly the now independent MP insists he will still be doing his day job, meaning he will not forego his £84,144 taxpayer-funded salary for the duration of his trip. 

He said: ‘As an MP, my first priority is to my constituents. I have agreed with the show’s producers that I can be reached at any point on any urgent constituency matters’. 

Yesterday the Prime Minister said Mr Hancock was doing the opposite by going on the show.

Mr Hancock did not seek advice from the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments (Acoba) before agreeing to the appearance, the PA news agency understands.

Lord Pickles, the Conservative chairman of the anti-corruption watchdog that advises on post-ministerial jobs, is expected to write to Mr Hancock to demand clarification.

Under the rules, Mr Hancock should seek clearance from Acoba for any new employment or appointments he takes on until next June.

A spokesman for Mr Hancock said the guidance ‘was followed in good faith’, adding: ‘The Acoba website clearly states that it does not regard media appearances as an appointment or employment.’

But the website only says that ‘one-off’ activities are not applicable, with any ‘longer-term arrangement’ needing a request to Acoba.

Depending on how he fairs during public votes, Mr Hancock could remain in the jungle for weeks.

In April, Tory MP and former housing minister Esther McVey was found to have broken the rules for failing to seek Acoba’s advice over her ‘regular engagement’ as a GB News presenter.

Mr Hancock can continue to pick up his taxpayer-funded salary as an MP while in the jungle. His spokesperson has since confirmed that he will donate ‘more than his salary’ to charity.

But Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesman Sarah Olney said: ‘The taxpayer should not pay him while he refuses to do his job.’

Matt Hancock arriving at Brisbane Airport for the new series of I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!

Matt Hancock arriving at Brisbane Airport for the new series of I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!

A source told MailOnline they believe Gina Coladangelo (pictured with Mr Hancock) will arrive Down Under at some point next week

A source told MailOnline they believe Gina Coladangelo (pictured with Mr Hancock) will arrive Down Under at some point next week

Mr Hancock has flown more than 10,000 miles for the new series of I'm A Celeb

Mr Hancock has flown more than 10,000 miles for the new series of I'm A Celeb

Mr Hancock has flown more than 10,000 miles for the new series of I’m A Celeb, shown landing in Australia 

It comes after the father-of-three revealed he had twice been asked to appear on the show before but accepted the third offer because the government is now ‘stable’. 

Many have pondered whether he actually made up his mind when he was snubbed by new PM Rishi Sunak at his victory rally last week, which was tacit confirmation his career as a senior MP is over.

And millions are set to punish him for his decision – including MPs. 

One former minister has threatened ‘to vote for him to eat armadillo c**k every night’. 

Transport Secretary Mark Harper said he should ‘step down’ as a MP and did not deny he would also vote for Mr Hancock to face Bushtucker Trials, smiling as he said: ‘That will be between me and my phone.’

Shadow health secretary Wes Streeting said: ‘We are going to make sure on a cross-party basis that Matt Hancock gets a fill of every creepy crawly in that jungle’. 

In Mr Hancock’s constituency, Andy Drummond, the cheesed off deputy chairman of the local Conservative Association, said: ‘I’m looking forward to him eating a kangaroo’s penis’. 

And local Tory councillor Ian Houlder said Mr Hancock has ‘no shame’, a view shared by many, not least the families of 200,000-plus Covid victims who say he is ‘cashing in’ on the pandemic.

‘Everybody knows what he did during the Covid pandemic and he seems to want to rehabilitate himself all the time in the public eye,’ Mr Houlder said. ‘He’s got a skin as thick as a rhinoceros, quite frankly.’ 

PR expert Mark Borkowski told MailOnline: ‘Hancock is desperate for the visibility or the money… if it’s the money I’d expect £350,000 – he should be very careful what he wishes for.’ 

He added: ‘He believes this will kick-start a career as a sad extra. Jumping on the flight to enter the jungle proves he is a fame junkie’.

Writing in The Sun, Mr Hancock said: ‘Some may think I’ve lost my marbles or had one too many drinks, swapping the comfortable surroundings of Westminster and West Suffolk for the extreme conditions of the Australian outback, going where there will be few creature comforts, not enough food, and a load of physical tasks involving snakes, spiders and plenty of other creepy-crawlies.

‘While there will undoubtedly be those who think I shouldn’t go, I think it’s a great opportunity to talk directly to people who aren’t always interested in politics, even if they care very much about how our country’s run.

‘I thought long and hard about this – in fact I turned down I’m A Celebrity… twice this summer – but when they approached me for a third time last week, I had a change of heart.’ 

He added: ‘And no, it wasn’t the cheque that changed my mind. I will be making a donation to St Nicholas Hospice in Suffolk and causes supporting dyslexia off the back of my appearance. 

‘I will, of course, also declare the amount I receive from the show to Parliament to ensure complete transparency, as normal.

‘When I was first approached to take part – while I was flattered and naturally curious – it didn’t take me too long to turn the opportunity down because of the instability government was facing at the time.

‘Now though, the government is stable. Rishi Sunak has made a great start and I know he has got what it takes to be a superb PM.’

In the jungle, Mr Hancock will be joining pop star Boy George, Coronation Street’s Sue Cleaver, Hollyoaks’ Owen Warner, TV presenter and property expert Scarlette Douglas, former England rugby player Mike Tindall, Loose Women star Charlene White, radio presenter Chris Moyles, reality TV star Olivia Attwood, former footballer Jill Scott and comedian Babatunde Aleshe. 

However he may avoid the infamous bushtucker trials when he appears on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! due to a health condition, MailOnline understands. 

The politician is said to be suffering from trench foot, which may preclude him from carrying out the stomach-churning challenges with creepy crawlies. 

James Argent was left suffering from the painful condition as he returned to work earlier this month after filming Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins in Thailand.

The upcoming series has been plunged into chaos after six stars, including James, 34, were forced to pull out on medical grounds. 

Mr Hancock is said to have got trench foot while filming for the show and may not have cleared up yet, The Sun reports.

A source said: ‘When he was filming SAS Who Dares Wins in October, Matt got trench foot – in fact, a lot of the cast did. It can take up to six months to recover from that, so any water-based tasks or swimming trials would be bad news for his feet.’

The treatable condition can heal within weeks if managed properly. ITV has been contacted for comment about the claims.

The ex-Health Secretary, pictured in Brisbane, has been kicked out of the parliamentary Tory party

The ex-Health Secretary, pictured in Brisbane, has been kicked out of the parliamentary Tory party

Mr Hancock is heading to the Australian jungle to take part in I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!

Mr Hancock is heading to the Australian jungle to take part in I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!

Mr Hancock playing at a charity football match in 2018. He has defended his decision to fly to Australia

Mr Hancock playing at a charity football match in 2018. He has defended his decision to fly to Australia

Mr Hancock jumping while going on a run. He was forced to quit Boris Johnson's Government after he was caught flouting his own Covid lockdown rules with married aide Gina Coladangelo

Mr Hancock jumping while going on a run. He was forced to quit Boris Johnson’s Government after he was caught flouting his own Covid lockdown rules with married aide Gina Coladangelo

One friend of Mr Hancock's estranged wife Martha (who he's pictured with) was searing in their condemnation of the father of three, branding him a 'total halfwit who's making some unwise career moves'

One friend of Mr Hancock’s estranged wife Martha (who he’s pictured with) was searing in their condemnation of the father of three, branding him a ‘total halfwit who’s making some unwise career moves’

An ally of Mr Hancock said producers of the ITV show have agreed that Mr Hancock can communicate with them if there is an urgent constituency matter

An ally of Mr Hancock said producers of the ITV show have agreed that Mr Hancock can communicate with them if there is an urgent constituency matter 

Cast: (L-R) Mike Tindall, Owen Warner, Olivia Attwood, Charlene White, Boy George, Scarlette Douglas, Sue Cleaver, Chris Moyles, Babatúndé Aléshé and Jill Scott have been unveiled as the I'm A Celebrity 2022 lineup

Cast: (L-R) Mike Tindall, Owen Warner, Olivia Attwood, Charlene White, Boy George, Scarlette Douglas, Sue Cleaver, Chris Moyles, Babatúndé Aléshé and Jill Scott have been unveiled as the I’m A Celebrity 2022 lineup

The response at Westminster was swift after news Mr Hancock would join the show which starts on Sunday.

As well as being stripped of the party whip, campaigners for families bereaved in the Covid-19 pandemic accused Mr Hancock of trying to ‘cash in on his terrible legacy’.

Mr Harper told Sky News: ‘The chief whip has made the position clear, which is he’s made a decision that going on I’m a Celebrity is not compatible with doing your job properly as a Member of Parliament, which is why the whip has been taken away, and as a former chief whip I completely support those decisions taken by my successor to support him standing down as an MP.’

Matt Hancock could miss SIXTEEN Commons debates as well and multiple constituency surgeries if he is in Australia for the duration of I’m A Celebrity (while still picking up his MP’s salary)

November 2 2022 

Prime Minister’s Question Time 

November 3 2022 

Oral questions – Department for International Trade 

Business Questions to the Leader of the House 

Debate on a Motion on the independent review of smokefree 2030 policies

General debate on the Government’s white paper ‘A Fairer Private Rented Sector’

November 4 2022

Surgery for constituents in West Suffolk 

November 7 2022 

Ministry of Defence questions

The Social Housing (Regulation) Bill [Lords]: Second reading

Adjournment debate: Governance and financial sustainability of football clubs in England

November 8 2022 

Adjournment debate: Impact of night flights on communities under flight paths

November 9 2022 

Prime Minister’s Question Time

Adjournment debate: Bathing water status for rivers

November 11 2022

Surgery for constituents in West Suffolk 

November 14 2022

Home Office: Oral questions

November 15 2022

Treasury questions

November 16 2022 

Prime Minister’s Question Time

November 17 2022 

Autumn Statement by the Chancellor

November 11 2022

Surgery for constituents in West Suffolk 

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Pressed on whether Mr Hancock should stand down as an MP, Mr Harper said: ‘What he chooses to do in the future is a matter for him.’

Chief whip Simon Hart said: ‘Following a conversation with Matt Hancock, I have considered the situation and believe this is a matter serious enough to warrant suspension of the whip with immediate effect.’

One Tory MP described Mr Hancock as an ‘absolute prat’.

Tory MP Tim Loughton said Mr Hancock had been an ‘absolute prat’.

‘I’m completely disappointed and disgusted that he’s put his self and a so-called celebrity career ahead of serving his constituents,’ he told Times Radio.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said it was ‘unlikely’ Mr Sunak would be watching the programme.

‘The PM believes that at a challenging time for the country MPs should be working hard for their constituents whether that is in the House or in their constituency,’ they said.

Mr Hancock was forced to quit as health secretary in June 2021 after breaking coronavirus social distancing rules by conducting an affair in his ministerial office with his then aide Ms Coladangelo.

Mr Hancock was among supporters of Mr Sunak who welcomed the new leader to Conservative headquarters last week but was overlooked for a ministerial job under the new Prime Minister. 

He had also reportedly been considering a run to be chairman of the Commons Treasury Committee but pulled out of the race on Monday.

An ally of Mr Hancock said: ‘There are many ways to do the job of being an MP. 

‘Whether he’s in camp for one day or three weeks, there are very few places people will be able to see a politician as they really are.

‘Where better to show the human side of those who make these decisions than with the most watched programme on TV? 

‘Politicians like Matt must go to where the people are – particularly those who are politically disengaged.

‘Matt’s of the view that we must embrace popular culture. 

‘Rather than looking down on reality TV, we should see it for what it is – a powerful tool to get our message heard by younger generations.’

The ally said producers of the show have agreed that Mr Hancock can communicate with constituency staff if there is an urgent matter in West Suffolk.

He will make a donation to St Nicholas Hospice in Suffolk and he will also be required to declare the amount he receives from the show to Parliament.

Mr Hancock initially turned down the offer to take part because of the political chaos at Westminster.

But since Mr Sunak became Prime Minister the former health secretary believes ‘the government is stable’.

But his decision to enter the jungle drew criticism from political opponents, union chiefs and campaigners.

Lobby Akinnola, from the Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice campaign, said: ‘Matt Hancock isn’t a ‘celebrity’, he’s the former health secretary who oversaw the UK having one of the highest death tolls in the world from Covid-19 whilst breaking his own lockdown rules.

‘The fact that he is trying to cash in on his terrible legacy, rather than showing some humility or seeking to reflect on the appalling consequences of his time in Government, says it all about the sort of person he is.’

SNP MP Pete Wishart said: ‘It speaks volumes that Matt Hancock would rather be stranded in a remote jungle eating kangaroo testicles than spend a moment longer on the Tory benches at Westminster, as Rishi Sunak’s government lurches from one crisis to another.’

Shadow health minister Andrew Gwynne said: ‘To be fair to Matt Hancock, I’d sooner eat wallaby anus than be a Tory MP too.’

The House of Commons is in recess from November 10-14, but celebrities could spend up to three weeks in the jungle.

It means Mr Hancock would miss significant Commons business, including the Autumn Statement on November 17 if he remains in the contest.

Dave Penman, general secretary of the FDA union which represents senior civil servants, said: ‘Oh to have a job where you can decide for yourself you’re taking a month off, abandon your work and responsibilities, get paid shedloads and face little consequence.

‘I’m sure he’ll be an inspiration to other public servants.’

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