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MATT HANCOCK: “I received more votes on I’m A Celebrity than I ever did in Parliament”

MATT Hancock has told how he received more votes on ‘I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!’ than he ever did in Parliament, and insisted money wasn’t the “primary consideration” for his jungle stint.

The former Health Secretary finished third on the ITV series last year, and subsequently announced he was standing down as an MP, but Matt – who was reportedly paid £400,000 for his jungle stint – has insisted money wasn’t the “primary consideration” for appearing on the programme. 

Speaking to Susanna Reid and Richard Madeley on ‘Good Morning Britain’, he said: “I knew they [the public] were going to vote for me over and over again and then they stopped voting for me to go on the trials, and they voted for me to stay in.

“I’ve had more votes on ‘I’m A Celebrity’ than I ever got as a politician in Parliament.

“The money wasn’t the primary consideration. Obviously, you are paid a fee for these things and if you’re an MP you declare that. 

“ITV asked me to come on and offered me a fee as part of that. My primary reason to come on was to communicate with people about who I am as a person. Because you find that as a politician at a particularly difficult time… the way that you’re in the media is very sort of, ‘Why did you get this wrong?’ … but it does mean that one part of your personality comes over. 

“Oddly, you have to go all the way to Australia to be able to show who you are as a person.”

When asked if he negotiated his fee for his appearance on ‘I’m A Celebrity’, he said: “Absolutely. Of course there was a negotiation and discussion over the fee, there always is.

“The primary reason [for going on the show] is because over the pandemic I ended up a very public figure and I felt what the public knew about me was through a particular lens, not coming on this programme and Piers Morgan shouting a monologue at me for twenty minutes.”

During ‘I’m A Celebrity’, Matt – who quit as Health Secretary after he came under fire when he was caught kissing his former aide, and now-girlfriend, Gina Coladangelo, during the COVID pandemic, breaking his own social distancing guidance in the process – was widely criticised for leaving his West Suffolk constituents to take part in the ITV show. 

He insists that from his ‘I’m A Celebrity’ fee he has given two five-figure sums to charity. 

Matt said: “I did absolutely give some of the money to charities. I didn’t primarily do it for the money. I gave a five-figure sum to two charities.

“I’m really proud of the money I raised for charity. It’s good giving money to charity… and the money I’ve given to charity is more than my MP salary.”

Matt also revealed “all of the royalties” from his book, ‘Pandemic Diaries’, are going to NHS charities, and he now plans to make more documentaries, but insisted he won’t be applying to be a ‘GMB’ presenter. 

He added: “I’m not going to stand as an MP again. 

“One thing I’d like to do more of is documentaries. I’m not planning on doing anything like that [I’m A Celebrity…] again, that I haven’t already been involved with.

“I have been a politician and I am clearly still in the public eye. I’m going to spend 2023 working out what I want to do… [but] no, I’m not going to be applying for your [Richard] job.”

Good Morning Britain airs weekdays from 6am-9am on ITV1 and streams on ITVX.



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