Boris wins over Labour MP Kate Hoey

Conservative London mayoral challenger Boris Johnson would employ Labour MP Kate Hoey if he wins Thursday’s election.

Ms Hoey, the Vauxhall MP, would serve as a non-executive director advising Mr Johnson on sport and the Olympics in the event of a Tory win.

The move is being seen as bad news for incumbent Ken Livingstone, who is struggling to maintain the slim lead he has won in recent days in opinion polls.

“I am delighted to announce that Kate Hoey will join me in my administration if I win on May 1st,” Mr Johnson said today.

“Kate has a huge and well-known commitment to sport and to London, and I am determined to bring talent from across politics and the community to a new administration.”

Ms Hoey, who according to the Public Whip website has already rebelled against the government 22 times in 2008, would work on the ring-fenced funding for sport Mr Johnson has pledged for the London Development Agency.

“If I am lucky enough to win she will be working on an agenda that includes protecting playing fields, boosting sports clubs and making sure that London’s kids all benefit from the Olympics,” Mr Johnson added.

Mr Livingstone has expressed disappointment over the news but, dismissing her significance, told LBC Radio Ms Hoey has been “a sort of semi-detached member of the Labour party in recent years”.

“I’m surprised he’s going to take her advice on sport because I think the reason Tony Blair sacked her at the end of his first term was because she’d been involved in all the fiasco over Wembley,” he said.