David Cameron accused of “demeaning” the role of prime minister through Greensill involvement

David Cameron accused of “demeaning” the role of prime minister through Greensill involvement
Labour MP tells former PM the firm’s operations had been described as a ‘Ponzi scheme’

David Cameron has been accused of “demeaning” the position of prime minister, as he answered MPs’ questions about his role in the collapse of Greensill Capital.

The former PM was confronted by Labour MP Siobhain McDonagh as he gave evidence to the House of Commons Treasury Committee.

Ms McDonagh told him that former Treasury minister Lord Myners had described the firm’s operations as a “Ponzi scheme”.

She told him: “You had the enormous privilege of being the prime minister of our country, you’re one of just five people post-war to have been re-elected to lead our government. “Do you not feel that you have demeaned yourself and your position by WhatsApping your way around Whitehall based on a fraudulent enterprise, based on selling high risk debt to unsuspecting investors?”

She asked: “Did you know that 90 per cent of Greensill’s business represented unsecured loans to high-risk borrowers, and half the time without any invoice whatsoever?”

And referring to his involvement in the Earnd app used in the NHS to allow staff to receive payments up-front, she asked him: “Do you accept that your lobbying of the NHS wasn’t for its health but for the health of Greensill expand its balance sheet?”

But Mr Cameron insisted that the NHS pay scheme was intended to “stamp out payday lending” by allowing staff to access money they had learnt.

He told Ms McDonagh: “My view is that what I did was I made a choice to work for a business which I hoped would be a UK FinTech success story – and many people believed that it would – and I wanted to help that company.

“What I did at that time of economic crisis was put to the government what I genuinely believed was a good idea of how to get money into the hands of small businesses and get their bills paid early.”