Tory peer Baroness Mone, who is at the centre of controversy over her alleged links to a firm awarded a PPE contract, will take a leave of absence from the House of Lords with immediate effect.
The standards watchdog is investigating the Tory peer, 51, who is from Glasgow, over the awarding of government contracts worth more than £200m to the supplier PPE Medpro.
Lady Mone, who is married to Scottish businessman Doug Barrowman, has consistently denied any “role or function” in the company, and her lawyers have previously said she is “not connected to PPE Medpro in any capacity”.
A spokesman for Baroness Mone said: “With immediate effect, Baroness Mone will be taking a leave of absence from the House of Lords in order to clear her name of the allegations that have been unjustly levelled against her.”
The leave of absence means Lady Mone will not attend sittings of the House, vote on any proceedings and will not be able to claim any allowance.
Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner has accused members of the Tory party of using the pandemic as an “opportunity” to “get rich”.
In the House of Commons last month, Rayner called for the Government to release records relating to the award of the PPE Medro contract, asking: “Can the minister today tell us if that mediation process has reached any outcome and what public funds have been recovered, if any?”
Health minister Neil O’Brien responded by saying a “satisfactory agreement” had not been reached with PPE Medpro about its contract.
A House of Lords spokesman said: “Baroness Mone has indicated she intends to request to take leave of absence from the House of Lords.
“Members request leave of absence by writing to the Clerk of the Parliaments. In doing so, they must confirm when they intend to return to the House.
“The Clerk will take a decision once he has received the formal request and after consulting with others as required.”