Tory boldly claims that Boris Johnson isn't avoiding an interview with Andrew Neil

Tory boldly claims that Boris Johnson isn't avoiding an interview with Andrew Neil

A Tory politician has boldly claimed that Boris Johnson isn't avoiding an interview with Andrew Neil, despite the prime minister still failing to confirm an interview with the presenter.

Nadim Zahawi, who has been the MP for Statford-upon-Avon since 2010, appeared on the BBC's Politics Live show on Saturday, ahead of the prime minister's final debate with Jeremy Corbyn that evening.

During his appearance on the show the contentious topic of Johnson avoiding an interview with Neil, despite every other party leader talking on air to the veteran broadcaster, came up.

While talking about the policies that the Tories intend to introduce, should they win the election, Zahawi mentioned that Johnson had taken part in "umpteen interviews."

This prompted Politics Live presenter Jo Coburn to say:

Why won't he do it with Andrew Neil?

Zahawi, who perhaps hasn't been keeping a close eye on the news, claimed that Johnson' wasn't avoiding Neil at all adding that the PM has done "118 interviews."

This small but bold and completely untrue claim has been viewed more than 100,000 times on Twitter and, needless to say, people weren't impressed.

Johnson's avoidance of Neil lead the 70-year-old Scot to make a remarkable statement on Thursday evening. Moments after concluding an interview with Nigel Farage he said:

There is still one to be done. Boris Johnson. The prime minister.

We've been asking for weeks now to give us a date, a time, a venue. As of now, none has been forthcoming. It is not too late. We have an interview prepared. Oven-ready, as Mr Johnson likes to say. 

The theme running through our questions is trust - and why at so many times in his career, in politics and journalism, critics and sometimes even those close to him have deemed him to be untrustworthy. It is, of course, relevant to what he is promising us all now.

Leaders' interviews have been a key part of the BBC's prime-time election coverage for decades. We do them, on your behalf, to scrutinise and hold to account those who would govern us. That is democracy.

At the time of writing, the election is less than a week away and Johnson is yet to announce whether he will be talking to Andrew Neil or not.

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