Questions over Foreign Office payments of £1,850 to Norwich City club shop while Liz Truss at the helm | Politics news

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The Foreign Office spent more than £4,300 of public money on two trips to the hairdressers and almost £1,900 at the Norwich City FC shop when Liz Truss was in charge, documents show.

The payments were highlighted by Labour’s shadow lawyer Emily Thornberry when she raised concerns about the department’s use of public procurement cards.

She has questioned dozens of transactions, including two payments to a “hairdressing and beauty salon” of £2,360 on November 15 last year and £1,973.30 on March 22 this year.

Mrs Thornberry also questioned two payments to Norwich City’s online store of £1,318 on October 21 last year and £523.50 on March 21 this year.

It is not known who made the payments or what was purchased.

At the time, Mrs Truss, who is the MP for South West Norfolk and a fan of the Canary Islands, was Foreign Secretary.

In a letter to junior secretary of state Gillian Keegan about the department’s card spending, Ms Thornberry admitted there would be appropriate reasons for the vast majority of purchases.

Liz Truss, who was Foreign Secretary before becoming Prime Minister, is a fan of the Canary Islands
Picture:
Liz Truss, who was Foreign Secretary before becoming Prime Minister, is a Norwich City fan

She added: “But there are also several items and categories of expenditure which – on the surface – are not so easy to understand and appear unusual in the context of past FCDO expenditure: high quality private catering; wellness and beauty treatments; comprehensive supplies from British vineyards; large quantities of home furnishings; and even £1,841 in spending at the Norwich City club shop.”

Ms Thornberry also noted that “especially during a cost of living crisis – taxpayers want to know that every pound of their money is being spent properly and when there are indications of unusual or excessive spending in any corner of government, they want to see proper controls in place”.

A Foreign Office spokesman said: “We are committed to using public money responsibly. Our staff follow set guidelines to ensure procurement is appropriate and achieves value for money for taxpayers.”

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