Thursday, 30 Mar 2023

Tories’ treasurer hired by Sunak and Zahawi rakes it in from Russia

Zahawi: ‘Unsustainable’ to stay amid investigation says Berry

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A Tories’ top treasurer who was hired by Rishi Sunak and Nadeem Zahawai has been raking it in from a firm still dealing with Vladimir Putin’s Russia, a news report has claimed. Billionaire Mohamed Mansour co-owns UK-based Unatrac and a subsidiary supplying machinery to Russia’s oil and gas industry.

The Mirror reported that Mr Mansour’s company had donated £600,000 to the Conservatives and he is said to have pledged £2million to the Tories himself.

He was appointed Senior Treasurer last month by PM Rishi Sunak and tax row party chairman Nadhim Zahawi.

Unatrac has made millions with its subsidiary Mantrac Vostok by supplying Caterpillar machinery to Russia – which has been under sanctions since invading Ukraine last year.

In last March, Mr Sunak when he was a Chancellor had said: “I am urging firms to think very carefully about their investments in Russia and how they may aid the Putin regime.”

However, in December, he and tax-row Tory chairman Nadhim Zahawi appointed Mr Mansour, who is reportedly worth £2.3billion, to the top post with the Tories.

The job of Senior Treasurer is expected to involve a fundraising drive ahead of next year’s expected General Election.

The Mirror reported that last night the party refused to comment or answer questions on the ongoing Russian business interests of their head fundraiser.

Anneliese Dodds, Labour Party chair, told the publication: “Rishi Sunak has appointed a person who has made millions from trading in Russia.

“This Government is drowning in sleaze, making an absolute mockery of Sunak’s promise of professionalism, integrity and accountability at all levels.

“Once again Rishi Sunak is too weak to lead.

“Will he continue to accept donations from someone trading with Russia, or will he grow a backbone, stop taking the money and cut ties with this individual?”

Unatrac and sister firm Mantrac Vostok have a string of offices and warehouses throughout Russia, dealing in Caterpillar equipment for mining and energy production.

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On its website, Unatrac states that it operates in various African nations as well as Iraq and Russia.

A spokesman said they had “scaled back” their Russia operation following Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Sunday Mirror found Unatrac’s website was offering machinery for sale and rent in Russia, which were still listed on its website last night.

The two firms are part of Mansour Group, owned and controlled by Mr Mansour and his brothers Youssef and Yasseen.

It had revenues of more than £6billion in 2021.

He resigned in 2009 following a train crash that killed at least 50 people and injured 30 more.

Mr Mansour’s Tory prospects were the subject of widespread speculation last year, with sources repeatedly denying he was in the frame for the job of Senior Treasurer.

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