Northern Ireland news

Randox wishes Owen Paterson well in 'future endeavours'

Owen Paterson resigned as the MP for North Shropshire. Picture by House of Commons/PA Wire

A Co Antrim-based company linked to the Owen Paterson controversy said it wished him well in his "future endeavours" after the former Conservative MP said he would be "stepping aside" from his consultancy work.

Randox, a clinical diagnostics firm, also said that it "acknowledges Mr Paterson's wish" to "focus on his family and suicide prevention".

It came a day after the senior Tory resigned when British Prime Minister Boris Johnson U-turned to allow a fresh vote on his suspension for a breach of parliamentary rules.

The government whips were working to reschedule a vote on a six-week suspension for Mr Paterson after he was found to have repeatedly lobbied ministers and officials for two comanies - Randox and Lynn's Country Foods - paying him more than £100,000 per year.

Neither company is accused of any improper behaviour.

In a tweet Mr Paterson said he was "stepping aside from my current consultancy work to focus on my family and suicide prevention".

Randox said it "acknowledges Mr Paterson’s wish, at this difficult time, to step aside from his consultancy work to focus on his family and suicide prevention.

"We wish Owen and his family well in their future endeavours."

There has been no comment from Lynn’s Country Foods.

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