Jeremy Corbyn has been issued an apology by one of Sir Keir Starmer’s closest allies, after the MP was overheard making a joke about the former Labour leader. Shadow Health Secretary Wes Streeting was overheard saying that Mr Corbyn had “gone senile” as Mr Corbyn attempted to raise a point of order after Prime Minister’s Questions. The joke was branded “gross” by onlookers on social media.
Mr Streeting apologised to Mr Corbyn, saying the remark was made “in jest”, but admitted: “I accept in poor taste”.
He added: “I’ve dropped Jeremy a note directly to apologise for any offence caused”.
But the former Labour leader rejected the idea that it could have been made “in jest”, saying the issue is “very serious for people suffering from dementia”.
He called for the Shadow Health Secretary to make a public apology for the remark.
The MP for Islington North told JOE he was “subjected to an appalling and defamatory mental health slur”.
He continued: “I have now received an apology, and I have noted it. As I said in my reply, there’s nothing ‘in-jest’ about calling somebody senile.
“It’s not funny. It’s very serious for people suffering from dementia.
“He should know this as Shadow Health Secretary.
“I would just gently remind him that he though [Mr Corbyn] was the right person to look after our security.”
Later, Mr Corbyn raised a point of order, saying he was grateful for his “continued rent-free tenancy” in Mr Sunak’s head.
He added: “If he could just let me know when he intends to speak about me that’d be helpful. That’s the norm in the House.”
Mr Sunak replied: “If he could ask the Leader of the Opposition maybe to give me advanced sight of his questions, I’ll be happy to then let him know if I need to bring him up on questions of security.”
Sir Keir used PMQs to criticised Mr Sunak’s appointment of Gavin Williamson to his cabinet, following his resignation earlier this week.
The Labour leader described Sir Gavin as a “cartoon villain with a pet spider”, accusing Sir Keir of being “weak” for appointing the disgraced former minister.