Sacked Treasury adviser settles unfair dismissal claim

Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
Sonia Khan worked for Philip Hammond in the Treasury and was kept on by his successor, Sajid Javid

A special advisor who was escorted out of Downing Street by police after a confrontation with Dominic Cummings has settled her unfair dismissal claim.

Sonia Khan has agreed an out-of-court settlement with the government after being sacked in August 2019.

No reason was given for her dismissal, but it is thought she had been accused by Mr Cummings of leaking details of a no-deal Brexit exercise to the media.

Her then-boss, Sajid Javid "voiced his anger" with the PM over her treatment.

Mr Javid later resigned as chancellor after rejecting a demand from No 10 that he fire his entire team of aides.

In a statement, Ms Khan said she had reached a settlement with the Treasury and was "no longer pursuing my employment tribunal claim", which was due to be heard in December.

The figure has not been made public, but the Guardian is reporting "a five-figure payoff by the government".

The announcement comes a day after Dominic Cummings confirmed he would be leaving his role in Downing Street by Christmas.

Ms Khan was summoned to a meeting in August last year with Mr Cummings after details around Operation Yellowhammer - setting out the potential consequences of a no-deal Brexit - were leaked.

At the meeting, she handed over both her personal and work phones, and her phone logs were checked.

No reason was given for her dismissal, but it was suggested the issue was whether she could be trusted to be transparent with No 10.

After reports Ms Khan's security clearance was instantly removed and she was marched out of the building, the Metropolitan Police issued a statement, confirming a "police officer stationed at the door of No 10 Downing Street escorted a woman from the front door to exit gates as she did not have a security pass at the time".

After the incident, the relationship between No 10 and No 11 continued to sour, and Mr Javid left his post four weeks before he was due to present his Budget - handing the task to his Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Rishi Sunak.

Soon after, Ms Khan launched legal action against the Treasury for unfair dismissal and sex discrimination.

Now the two sides have reached a settlement, Ms Khan said she would now be "moving on with my life and career".

In a statement, she added: "I have a fulfilling job as a consultant, I maintain great affection for the Conservative Party and remain a committed Conservative.

"The party took me under its wing when I was a teen and I feel hugely privileged to have served as a special adviser under the last two prime ministers."

The BBC has contacted the Treasury for a response.