LONDON

British Health Secretary Matt Hancock on Friday said he would “remain focused on working to get the country out of this pandemic,” signaling that he would not resign despite calls from opposition parties.

Hancock’s statement came as Labour Party urged Prime Minister Boris Johnson to sack the secretary after pictures emerged on tabloid media showing him kissing a married aide.

“I accept that I breached the social distancing guidance in these circumstances,” the health secretary said.

“I have let people down and am very sorry.”

Hancock said: “I remain focused on working to get the country out of this pandemic, and would be grateful for privacy for my family on this personal matter.”

The alleged affair was revealed on Friday by The Sun, which published two photos, allegedly showing Hancock with Gina Coladangelo, whom he appointed as an aide last September.

“If Matt Hancock has been secretly having a relationship with an adviser in his office — whom he personally appointed to a taxpayer-funded role — it is a blatant abuse of power and a clear conflict of interest,” Labour Party chairwoman Annaliese Dodds said.

“The charge sheet against Matt Hancock includes wasting taxpayers’ money, leaving care homes exposed and now being accused of breaking his own Covid rules,” she said.

“His position is hopelessly untenable. Boris Johnson should sack him.”

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