An SNP MP has accused the Conservatives of delaying further emergency cost of living measures until the week of Sue Gray report. 

Chancellor Rishi Sunak is expected to announce a new billion-pound package of measures today, but Kirsty Blackman said the measures have been "held back". 

On Wednesday, the Prime Minister and many of his senior staff members faced harsh scrutiny after a long-awaited report into lawbreaking parties held during lockdown.

The dossier put together by Sue Gray found failures of leadership at a senior level, extensive lockdown-breaking with former principal private secretary Martin Reynolds joking about "getting away" with booze-filled gatherings.

Speaking to Good Morning Scotland, Kirsty Blackman said cost of living support should have been unveiled "months ago" but that it was "held back so that they can make the announcement in the wake of the Sue Gray report". 

However, a Tory minister has claimed the announcement is being made now following a warning from Ofgem that the price cap could surge to £2,800 in October.

HeraldScotland: SNP MP Kirsty BlackmanSNP MP Kirsty Blackman

Ms Blackman said: "They could have made this announcement, but they chose not to.

"They chose to keep it for this week and they have caused unimaginable, unimaginable pain and suffering as a result. 

"The fact that they have held this back, they have had so many people living in utter terror about how they're going to get through the next few months.

"They've held it back so that they can make the announcement in the wake of the Sue Gray report, so they can try and say, 'look, we're doing everything that we can'."

Mr Sunak will detail his plan in the Commons as the Government seeks to draw a line under the partygate row and focus on the squeeze in living standards caused by soaring inflation.

Details of the one-off tax to fund fresh support measures were not known but Labour is likely to claim a victory of sorts after it campaigned for the measure against opposition from Boris Johnson.

However, the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster said the decision to unveil a new finance package on Thursday is due to Ofgem’s price cap warning rather than as a distraction from the Sue Gray report.

Steve Barclay told Sky News: “In terms of the timing, firstly we don’t control the timing of the Sue Gray report. The timing of that is shaped by the Met Police investigation.

“What we’ve always said is, in terms of the fiscal response, we wanted to see from the Ofgem guidance what the full impact would be in the autumn on families so that we can get the design of that package right.

“We’ve had that guidance this week from Ofgem. That is why the Chancellor is coming forward today. It’s also in terms of Parliament and the parliamentary timetable.”

READ MORE: New measures to help cost of living crisis expected as Sunak to tax oil and gas giants