Rishi Sunak ignores Matt Hancock as he celebrates becoming prime minister
BBC News

Like him or loathe him, Rishi Sunak is the man of the hour.

The former chancellor, 42, will be appointed as the UK’s next prime minister on Tuesday, becoming the first of Asian heritage, the first Hindu and the youngest for more than 200 years.

After months (or, lets face it, years) of infighting among the Tories, he has warned his party that now’s the time to “unite or die”.

And yet, one of his MPs may have died a little bit inside on Monday evening when he attempted to congratulate his new boss.

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Twitter is convinced that Sunak gave his former colleague Matt Hancock the cold shoulder as he made his way, triumphant, into the Conservative Party headquarters.

The 42-year-old was filmed hugging and shaking hands with his friends and allies as he arrived at the offices to thunderous applause, but the disgraced ex-health Secretary was left on the sidelines.

The key moment was when Hancock suddenly dialled down his ear-to-ear grin as the soon-to-be PM glided past.

To be fair, there was a lot going on, so Sunak could very easily have just missed Hancock’s beaming face, but countless social media users are revelling in the prospect that this was an intentional snub.




Hancock backed Sunak in both of this year’s Tory leadership races and, following confirmation on Monday lunchtime that he’d be the party’s new leader, tweeted effusive praise of the new PM – so you might think he’d earnt a little recognition:

The pair worked closely together for over a year after being appointed to Boris Johnson's Cabinet, becoming two of the most recognisable figures in the country during the Covid pandemic.

But Hancock quit in June 2021 after leaked CCTV footage showed him kissing aide Gina Coladangelo in his office (sorry to make you revisit that bum-clutching image...).

The MP hasn’t had his hands on a red box since then but there’s been some speculation that he could make Sunak’s top team.

However, if that really was an intentional brush-off by the new PM on Monday, we don’t much fancy his chances.

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