Portsmouth South MP Hancock says he’s too unwell to campaign

Mike Hancock
Mike Hancock

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MIKE Hancock has said he’s too unwell to campaign and is ‘not doing anything’ ahead of the local election next week.

The independent Portsmouth South MP and Fratton ward councillor broke his recent silence to tell The News he’s too unwell.

He said: ‘I’m not doing anything. I’m not very well.’

It comes as reports say Mr Hancock is being treated at a Priory clinic and has been since February 3.

Cllr Hancock said he would not talk about his health.

As reported, he was suspended from the national and local Liberal Democrat party after a report was leaked detailing allegations of sexual misconduct against a vulnerable constituent. He strongly denies the claim.

Cllr Hancock’s agent Michael Andrews said he did not know where Cllr Hancock was – simply saying the MP had represented the people of Fratton for more than 40 years and that he was not well.

A statement released earlier this month said Cllr Hancock ‘remains in hospital with complications due to his recent heart operation and a related severe depressive disorder’.

His colleague and friend Cllr Les Stevens said he had seen the 68-year-old veteran politician to witness him signing electoral nomination forms.

Cllr Stevens said Cllr Hancock was not well when he saw him.

He said: ‘I was organising his candidates’ papers and he had to sign them.

‘I was told that unless he had doctors’ permission to come out [he couldn’t].

‘He was five minutes and then he was gone.’

Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson is the leader of the Lib-Dem ruling group at the city council.

He said: ‘A few weeks ago I went to see Mike. He’s in hospital, he’s not well.’

He refused to say where he had visited the councillor.