BRITAIN’S chief statistician Sir David Norgrove is under pressure to resign after being accused of “playing politics” and “misrepresenting” Boris Johnson.
Sir David, who has a duty to be politically impartial as the UK Statistics Authority chairman, wrote an open letter criticising the Foreign Secretary for stating in a 4,000-word article at the weekend the UK pays around £350million a week to the EU.
He wrote he was “surprised and disappointed”, claiming it was a “clear misuse” of official figures. Mr Johnson has been backed by government colleagues Priti Patel and Michael Gove, Jacob Rees Mogg and Nadine Dorries.
Ms Dorries yesterday claimed Sir David was “playing politics” by publicly criticising Mr Johnson for reviving the claim, which he used in his referendum campaign, that up to £350million a week extra would be freed up for public spending after Brexit.
Ms Dorries tweeted: “David Norgrove, resign. You are not fit to be head of UK statistics when you deliberately play politics to deceive and distort basic facts.”
Mr Johnson also accused him of a “complete misrepresentation” of his views.
Economics professor David Paton said yesterday the average annual payment, before the rebate’s deduction, to the EU from 2015-2017 “is just over £18billion per year, which works out to about £350million a week”.
Sir David’s spokesman said that he stood by his accusation.