The reigning I’m a Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here! champion, Danny Miller, has said Matt Hancock should expect the public to use him as a “toy” before voting him off the show.
The actor, known for playing Aaron Livesy on the ITV soap Emmerdale, suggested viewers would want to mete out punishments to the former health secretary as retribution for his handling of the Covid pandemic in the UK.
Hancock, the MP for West Suffolk, has had the Tory whip suspended and been criticised across the political divide after opting to join the show at a time when parliament is sitting.
The actor, appearing on ITV’s Good Morning Britain to discuss the series, which launches on Sunday, said he expected Hancock to receive similar treatment as the British DJ and producer Naughty Boy did in last year’s series, but for different reasons.
Miller, who was crowned King of the Castle during the 2021 series in Wales, said: “I think he needs to just accept the fact that he is going to be everyone’s toy.
“Last year, unfortunately, Naughty Boy got it because he did the first one [challenge] and he was very entertaining and everyone then went, ‘Naughty Boy, Naughty Boy, Naughty Boy!’.
“This year, I think regardless of how entertaining he is, [Hancock] needs to accept that what he has put us through. I think the public are going to say, ‘This is what we are going to put you through’.
“And when they are done with him they will just get rid of him, I think,” he added.
During the 2021 series, the public repeatedly voted for the music producer Naughty Boy to take part in the show’s “bushtucker trials”.
Asked about his favourites to win this year’s series, Miller replied: “I would like to think Sue Cleaver, Boy George and Jill Scott. They are my prediction for the final three.”
Ten contestants are confirmed for the show so far, plus Hancock, who is expected to be one of two surprise entries to the camp in the days after the launch.
Miller said that the final unannounced name could be the former prime minister Boris Johnson. Asked who, he replied: “I can’t tell you that. It’s Boris Johnson!”
Hancock, 44, is joining the rugby player Mike Tindall, the pop star Boy George and the former Love Island contestant Olivia Attwood, among others, in the Australian jungle.