Boris Johnson accused of 'hiding in fridge' to avoid Good Morning Britain interview
11 December 2019, 14:12 | Updated: 11 December 2019, 14:42
Boris Johnson has been accused of "hiding in a fridge" and dodging a reporter who was trying to secure an interview with him for Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid on Good Morning Britain.
One of the prime minister's aides also delivered a foul-mouthed tirade on TV after Jonathan Swain asked Mr Johnson for the interview.
The Tory leader was loading crates of milk and juice bottles into a delivery van in Leeds on his last day of the general election campaign.
Mr Swain approached him, asking: "Morning Prime Minister will you come on Good Morning Britain and deliver on your promise to talk to Piers and Susanna?"
"We're ready to go, we're live on ITV right now."
Mr Johnson's head of press Rob Oxley can then be heard saying "oh for f***'s sake" which left the Good Morning Britain hosts gasping.
A Conservative spokesperson later insisted that Boris was "categorically not hiding" in the fridge and was instead taking a moment to prepare for a separate interview.
Mr Swain then says to Mr Oxley: "Do you want to tone your language down as well because people are watching this this morning."
The reporter again asks if the prime minister would appear on the programme, to which he replied: "Of course I will."
However, he can then be seen walking away from the cameras after helping out workers at Greenside Farm Business Park.
Mr Swain asks for an interview again to which Mr Johnson says "I'll be with you in a second" and then walks into a fridge with staff from the business park.
Mr Morgan later said that Mr Oxley called in to the show to complain that he did not assault the reporter.
"He didn't assault our man Swain, alright he didn't assault him, what you were was extremely obnoxious, very aggressive, foul mouthed and repulsive," Mr Morgan said.
Former Lord Chancellor David Gauke, who will be standing as an independent candidate and not as a Conservative in the upcoming general election, mocked the prime minister online.
He said: "Just to be clear, I’m not avoiding Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid."
Jeremy Corbyn joined in at poking fun at Boris Johnson, telling hundreds of supporters in Middlesbrough: "I've not come here to deliver milk, or to hide in a fridge ... I've come here with a message of hope."
Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell also took to Twitter to express his scathing criticism of the Tory leader following the incident.
"Yet again Johnson avoids being questioned. He is not fit to be Prime Minister. His behaviour is cowardly, undignified and pathetic," he said.
Labour's candidate for North West Durham, Laura Pidcock, used her profile to question the prime minister's attitude.
"This morning I went on GMB and answered some tough questions. I think it’s right that politicians are held to account - why does Boris Johnson think he’s above the rest of us?" she asked.
Comedy writer and director Armando Iannucci warned people to not "write Johnson off as just a harmless clown" and compared the prime minister to Pennywise from the horror film It.