PARALLELS have been drawn between Chancellor Rishi Sunak and a character from a popular comedy show after the top Tory claimed the Government’s computer systems would not let them increase benefits.

The cost-of-living crisis has sparked calls for the Tory government to intervene to help the worst-off in society, at least by matching the Scottish Government in increasing benefits it controls by 6%.

UK benefits are increased each April in line with inflation rates the previous September. This year’s increase of 3.1% was vastly outstripped by inflation which has hit 7% and may yet even touch double digits.

The sky-rocketing inflation means that in April 2023 benefits could rise by as much as 10%, leading to calls for that increase to be brought forward.

However, Sunak claimed that the government’s computer systems were “complicated” and would not allow this to happen.

The Chancellor told Bloomberg: “The operation of our welfare system is technically complicated. It is not necessarily possible to [increase benefits] for everybody. Many of the systems are built so it can only be done once a year, and the decision was taken quite a while ago.”

While he conceded it sounded “like an excuse”, Sunak insisted he was “constrained somewhat by the operation of the welfare system”.

Labour’s deputy leader Angela Rayner responded on Twitter: “Computer said no? He’s insulting your intelligence.”

The reference was to David Walliams’s character from the sketch show Little Britain, who would rudely respond “computer said no” to simple requests from customers.