MATT Hancock was paid £320,000 for his controversial appearance on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!, it has been revealed.
The former health secretary’s fee was listed on the MP’s register of financial interests.
Hancock had the Conservative Party whip suspended for taking time off to appear on the ITV1 reality show
He emerged from the Australian jungle in third place behind actor Owen Warner and England professional footballer Jill Scott, following the show’s conclusion in November.
Hancock was subjected to numerous punishing and disgusting tasks while taking part, including being made to eat a camel’s penis and being covered in creepy crawlies.
Records on the MP’s register showed that on December 14 2022, the West Suffolk MP received £320,000 from Lifted Entertainment, ITV Studios, for the appearance, which lasted 30 days – a total of 720 hours.
Hancock’s appearance on the ITV show was controversial and his decision prompted criticism from Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and other top Tories, as well as mockery from some fellow MPs.
More than 1,000 complaints were made to broadcasting watchdog Ofcom over his participation – but he turned it around and won over legions of new fans who loved his down to earth persona becoming one of the favourites to win.
While in the jungle he also received a grilling from his campmates, including Culture Club singer Boy George and ITV broadcaster Charlene White, over his behaviour during the pandemic.
Ahead of entering the jungle Hancock said he went on I’m A Celebrity to “show what I am like as a person” as well as raising awareness of dyslexia.
The register also showed that he had been paid £48,000 for an interview and the serialisation of his book, Pandemic Diaries, in the Daily Mail and Mail On Sunday newspapers.
Hancock resigned as health secretary for breaking social distancing guidance by kissing and embracing an aide in his office.
After leaving I’m A Celebrity…, Hancock announced that he would not be standing for the Conservatives at the next general election.
He said that he was “incredibly proud” of the party’s achievements in government but told Mr Sunak that he had discovered new ways of connecting with the public and urged his party to “reconnect” with people.
It was previously revealed that Hancock had also earned £45,000 for taking part in Channel 4’s Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins.
A previous register entry revealed he spent 80 hours filming the programme while Parliament was in recess between September 24 and October 8, shortly before heading to Australia.
His appearance on the Channel 4 show is expected to air later this year.