Sue Gray 'appointed as Sir Keir Starmer's chief of staff'

Sue Gray's role in the Labour Party will need to be confirmed by a Westminster watchdog.

Senior UK civil servant Sue Gray reportedly leaves Cabinet Office to become Sir Keir Starmer’s chief of staff’ Institute for Government

The senior civil servant who led the investigation into the UK Government’s partygate scandal has reportedly been appointed as Sir Keir Starmer’s chief of staff.

Sue Gray is said to have quit her job at the Cabinet Office on Thursday to take on the Labour Party role.

However, the job must be approved by the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments (ACOBA), the watchdog that oversees new jobs for former ministers and civil servants.

According to the ACOBA website, the body will provide advice to the prime minister on such appointments.

It is understood that it will then be up to Rishi Sunak to make a final decision on agreeing to the appointment.

Gray has spent decades in the civil service and was head of propriety and ethics in the Cabinet Office between 2012 and 2018.

In May 2021, she took up the Cabinet position of second permanent secretary.

She rose to prominence during the Covid-19 pandemic when she led the investigation into the partygate scandal and authored the report which criticised then Boris Johnson’s government over a “failure of leadership and judgement”.

The report found there were 16 gatherings in Whitehall during coronavirus lockdowns in 2020 and 2021 which included “excessive consumption of alcohol”.

A Labour source said: “[Sue Gray] knows how Number 10 works and she’s very popular with civil servants.”

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