FILE PHOTO: Former deputy party leader and Speaker of the House, Nigel Farage, member of the European Parliament and founding Member of United Kingdom Independence Party, Nigel Farage, left, with former prime minister of the United Kingdom, David Cameron and Conservative Party leader, Nigel Farage, before the decision to call a general election in this file photo taken May 11, 2015. REUTERS/Andrew Yates/File Photo
LONDON (Reuters) – Former party leader Nigel Farage said he tested positive for two levels of drugs, including cocaine, which he said he took before last year’s European Union referendum, after the latest disclosures about possible Labour party donors.
He was given a blow-by-blow account of the scandal when a British newspaper published details of the highly detailed notes of a pair of meetings with two anonymous donors who put the campaign to oust Britain’s then opposition Conservative Party leader.
One donor revealed he had signed up two members of the National Health Service, including one who was offered health insurance from “one of the three EU-targetted free markets” including the “outsourced Europe” model.
Details of the other revelations emerged in the form of a letter to the editor of the Daily Telegraph newspaper. The anonymous donor said he gave Blair £20,000 in 2010, mostly in the form of donations to the Labour Party, while living in the UK.
Blair became prime minister after the Brexit vote but was forced to resign in December after losing power, turning his back on his plan to reunite Britain with the EU.
O‘Toole said in an interview with the Sunday Times newspaper that while he accepted that his use of cocaine in a private conversation was an isolated instance, having two levels of drugs could be toxic and the independent testing could have affected his health.“We’ve got cocaine, that’s my first reaction,” he said. “At the moment I am having counselling after that, we’ll see. My drugs have been stable for a while. I’ve played tennis, played for the football team, played golf, been a part of cricket. I have enough difficulty playing those games.”
According to the Sunday Times, O‘Toole met the unnamed donor “five times” at different times.
Labour, which is looking to trim its majority in parliament, said the revelations were “tragic” but added that O‘Toole had run a “clean” team.
“Nigel Blair tried to use the 2016 election as an excuse to do what he knows he’s guilty of: divide and rule,” Labour party spokesman Dan Jarvis said in a statement.“Voting for Labour is not a vote for any party in power to impose their policies on the country. As Labour’s policy director I have asked someone involved in the process who faced Nigel Blair directly about the issue and an official will tell you it wasn’t in any way a factor in those meetings.”