A VIDEO of SNP MP Joanna Cherry QC putting a Tory government minister through a forensic grilling at a parliamentary committee meeting has gone viral.

It came after social media users cottoned on to the fact that the arch-Brexiteer facing Cherry either could not or would not answer her questions.

Christopher Heaton-Harris, the Eurosceptic Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Exiting the European Union, visibly squirmed as Brexit Committee member Cherry, pictured, pressed for answers on the matter of the controversial contract awarded to Seaborne Freight to operate ferries out of Ramsgate - the company has no ships and Ramsgate cannot at present handle such ferries.

Having established that the contract was given because the Government is preparing for a no-deal Brexit, Cherry produced a copy of the contract between the Department for Transport and Seaborne, a contract signed under Regulation 32 of the Public Contracts Regulations Act of 2015.

Such contracts can only be given in matters of “extreme urgency” when events are “unforeseeable” and when the contracting authority – in this case the Government – does not bring about those “unforeseeable” events by itself.

The video shows Cherry repeatedly asking Heaton-Harris why the Government proceeded under regulation 32’s “extreme urgency” rules when, as he admitted earlier, officials have been planning for ‘no deal’ for two years.

“It is a very simple question, minister, can you answer it?” said Cherry. Heaton-Harris replied: “A range of operators were invited to tender and the correct due diligence was done to fulfil the plans that we require.”

Cherry was not having it. She asked: “Was no deal an unforeseeable event?”

The minister, who is a prominent member of Jacob Rees-Mogg’s European Research Group, replied: “No, em, having spent so much time energy and and effort on trying to get a deal, I like to think that we would, and everybody in Government our sole focus, well not sole focus, has been to try and get the deal over the line, I would suggest that actually we did everything correctly.”

Cherry continued to press Heaton-Harris over the “unforeseeable event” but he kept replying “the tenders were awarded correctly.”

Following the junior minister’s failure to provide sufficient answers, Cherry is going to raise the matter with the Attorney General.

She told The National: “The UK Government must now come clean and publish the legal advice it received before it decided to proceed under Regulation 32, and outline what unforeseeable event led the Government to pursue this legal route given its original claim has now been rebuffed.”