I PERSONALLY do not care that Matt Hancock has been having an affair with his adviser Gina Coladangelo. He won’t be the first minister to do so, and he won’t be the last.

However, there is a wider issue at stake which the media do not want to talk about and that is institutional corruption at the heart of the British state.

It is alleged that Mr Hancock and Ms Coladangelo were an item before she became a non-executive director for the Department for Health and Social Care. She received £15,000 a year for this role for 15 to 20 days’ work a year, despite there being no evidence of any experience in public health. In other words, her wages for the Department of Health and Social Care are 14 times higher than the pay of a junior nurse.

This follows on from Boris Johnson who when mayor of London awarded contracts to an American ex-model, Jennifer Arcuri, who claims that she had a sexual relationship with Mr Johnson between 2012 and 2016.

However, these scandals are merely the tip of the iceberg. Contracts for PPE have been awarded to Tory cronies, some of whom had no prior experience in supplying such products. One contract enabled the supplier to pocket up to £600 per gown provided.

Defence contracts too are given for useless and obsolete Second World War type hardware such as aircraft carriers and fighter aircraft and it is strange that each defence contract always exceeds its budget by at least 100 per cent.

In fact, the purpose of government contacts is not about public service or the needs of the British people, but to enable the ruling elite to loot and pillage the hard-earned taxes paid by working people.

I am old enough to remember the Poulson scandal of the 1970s which brought down a number of politicians, notably Home Secretary, Reginald Maudling.

However, these scandals were somewhat out of the ordinary and those involved sometimes paid the price. Today, the Tories don’t care and get away with corruption and sleaze because much of the national media is uninterested.

Moreover, under Labour leader Starmer there is no political opposition. Britain today is more corrupt that at any time since the middle class were first given the vote in 1832, in the days when the government was nicknamed ‘Old Corruption’.

It took fundamental political change and the threat of a French-style revolution to eventually hold Old Corruption to account.

John Gilmore, Bishop Auckland.