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British “conservative” president confounded by £30m loan to his wife’s company

Exposed Nadeem ZahaviThe former chancellor and current leader of Britain’s Conservative Party is under pressure to reveal the source of nearly £30m of unsecured loans to his wife’s British property firm.

The loans were used to finance parts of a large property portfolio in the UK, reported to be worth around £100m last year, and reported in the company’s accounts for 2017 to 2021, but there was no information on who the lenders were.

Calls for further transparency have prompted the government to launch an ethics investigation after a recent request by a former adviser to explain how he manages his family’s wealth comes after he became embroiled in a growing controversy over his tax affairs.

Accounts show that unsecured loans were made to a company of less than £30 million Zahavi & ZahaviIt paid £60m for its real estate portfolio, which includes commercial and retail buildings in London, Birmingham, Brighton and Woolton-on-Thames.

Founded in 2010 by Al-Zahavi and Al-Zahavi, it is jointly owned by the chairman and his wife, Lana Saab, who transferred her 50 percent stake to it when she became minister in January 2018.

Al-Zahavi, whose tax affairs have been referred to the independent adviser for ministerial standards, said he believed he had acted properly throughout: “You will understand that it is inappropriate to discuss, to ensure the independence of this process. As I continue my duties as leader of the Conservative Party, I will publish more.

Al-Zahawy and Al-Zahawy currently own 17 titles, according to cadastre records, including three buildings bought for around £19m in central Wimbledon in 2016 and a £6.3m retail unit in Cambridgeshire, the site of a Co-op supermarket, bought in 2021.

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