A third person who received an honour from Boris Johnson was listed with an inflated job title, Tortoise has established.
Ben Mallet, who was made an OBE by the former prime minister “for political and public service”, appears on the honours list as “Former Strategy Director for the General Election and London Campaign Director.”
However several sources told Tortoise this citation was incorrect. That title was instead held by Isaac Levido, who now advises the current prime minister Rishi Sunak on strategy.
One former Number 10 insider said Mallet was “definitely not” strategy director at the 2019 election.
Another said: “He was no such thing.” In a subsequent role in the private sector, Mallet had “spent most of time working for Boris e.g. househunting”, he added.
A third source, who worked on the 2019 general election campaign, said: “They stuck him in a room and said don’t touch anything.”
A fourth source said: “He’s a good man. I think the OBE was for persisting with the Shaun Bailey campaign for two years”.
According to LinkedIn, he was strategy director for Johnson’s leadership campaign for four months in 2019 and “campaign director – London” from January 2020 until June 2021. This covers the period of Bailey’s unsuccessful mayoral campaign.
Mallet’s potted bio for his current employer also makes no reference to the general election.
He appears chatting and drinking wine in a video of a “Jingle and Mingle” party at CHHQ when London was under lockdown restrictions. According to the BBC, Mallet sent the invites for the event.
He did not respond to requests for comment.
Last week Tortoise revealed that Charlotte Owen, due to become the UK’s youngest-ever life peer, appeared to have exaggerated the amount of time she worked at Downing Street on her public profile.
The official listing for Kulveer Ranger, another of Johnson’s picks for a peerage, as a special adviser to the UK government was also incorrect.
Tortoise revealed last week that the register of meetings shows that Ranger had in fact once met a special adviser.
Both his Wikipedia, which first described him as an adviser, and the official documents, have since been updated.
A spokesman for Johnson told Tortoise: “The citations are written by officials. Not by Boris or anyone else.”
The Cabinet Office did not respond to requests for comment.