Sky News presenter tells MP defending Matt Hancock 'where to get off' after family were banned from daughter's funeral

A SKY News presenter today raged at an MP defending Matt Hancock by telling him "where to get off" after hundreds were banned from attending his daughter's funeral.

Trevor Phillips told Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis how he buried Sushila Phillips, 36, on May 11 – just five days after cheating Hancock kissed aide Gina Coladangelo in his office in a breach of Covid restrictions.

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The Health Secretary quit his ministerial role and apologised to his family after the scandal was revealed by The Sun.

Speaking today, Phillips said 300 loved ones were forced to watch his daughter's funeral online because they were banned from the service "even though it was in the open air, because of the rule of 30, because of the instruction by Mr Hancock".

As Lewis listened, the Sky News broadcaster fumed: "I want to put a private – personal question I guess, in a way – to you.

"Over the past two days every Cabinet minster including you has come out to essentially defend the Prime Minister and Matt Hancock.

"The pictures that we saw were of an encounter on May 6. On May 11, my family buried my daughter who had died not of Covid but during the lockdown.

"Three hundred of our family and friends turned up online but most of them were not allowed to be at the graveside even though it was in the open air because of the rule of 30, because of the instruction by Mr Hancock.

"Now the next time one of you tells me what to do in my private life, explain to me why I shouldn't just tell you where to get off?"

The anti-racism campaigner's daughter, Sushila, a freelance journalist, died "peacefully, in her own bed" in April following a 22-year fight with anorexia.

Her family described her as "one of the wisest, kindest, strongest and funniest people" and "a force and the most beautiful soul" following her tragic death.

Responding to Phillips, Lewis blurted out: "Look I absolutely accept and understand the frustration, even the anger, people have, having been rough the situations they've been through.

"People across the country, I've lost friends whose funerals I've not been able to go to over the last period – that is such a tragic situation for any of us to be in, and that's – I have to say – why its so important all of us do what we can to keep ourselves, our families, our friends, our wider community safe.

"It's also why what Matt did was wrong.

"He acknowledged that, why he apologised immediately for his behaviour and acknowledged what he did was wrong, and it's also why he's taken the decision that his position was untenable and distracted from the wider work that we've all got to do to move forward in the pandemic and out of the pandemic."

It comes after Piers Morgan blasted Hancock for resigning over his affair and not over failures that saw Britain's Covid toll rise.

Taking to Twitter, former Good Morning Britain host Piers, 56, berated the minister, writing: "Didn’t resign for his abject failures on PPE, testing & care homes that led to Britain having the worst covid death toll in Europe.

"Did resign for being caught snogging his mistress. Pretty much sums up Matt Hancock. As the Prime Minister said: 'Totally f***ing hopeless.'"

Hancock finally fell on his sword admitting he had "let down" the millions who had made painful personal sacrifices during the pandemic.

Support for the minister had been dwindling after it emerged he told his wife he was leaving her on Thursday shortly after he learned that his affair with married Coladangelo was about to be exposed.

Martha Hancock had no idea her husband was having an affair until he broke the news and announced that their marriage was over, the Times reports.

CCTV images showed him passionately kissing his aide – with the dad-of-three shamelessly asking for "privacy on this personal matter" just hours later.

He admitted he had "broken social distancing rules" after lecturing the country on coronavirus regulations throughout the pandemic.

He was recorded kissing her on May 6 – while hugging was still banned.

In his resignation letter to the Prime Minister, Hancock wrote: "I am writing to resign as Secretary of State for Health and Social Care. We have worked so hard as a country to fight the pandemic.

"The last thing I would want is for my private life to distract attention from the single-minded focus that is leading us out of this crisis.

"I want to reiterate my apology for breaking the guidance, and apologise to my family and loved ones for putting them through this. I also need to be with my children at this time.

"We owe it to people who have sacrificed so much in this pandemic to be honest when we have let them down as I have done by breaching the guidance.

"The NHS is the best gift a nation has ever given itself, and the dedication and courage of the NHS staff and the ceaseless work of the officials in the Department is something we should all be proud of."

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