UK housing minister under fire over influence-peddling claim

LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is facing calls to fire his housing minister over allegations that he rushed through the approval of a contentious property development funded by a wealthy Conservative Party donor. The allegations threatening to tarnish the government focus on Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick’s decision in January to approve a development of 1,500 homes in London’s Docklands that had been rejected by planning inspectors. Jenrick’s approval came weeks after he met wealthy developer Richard Desmond at a Conservative fundraising dinner. Desmond made a donation to the Conservative Party two weeks after the decision. Jenrick says allegations that he was improperly influenced were “outrageous.”