Boris Johnson's father has defended his son, insisting he was the victim of an "unwarranted leak" over plans to increase NHS funding.

The Foreign Secretary suffered a humiliating rebuke in front of Theresa May's cabinet over a leaked report that suggested he would demand a post-Brexit dividend of £100m a week for the NHS.

However, speaking on Australia's ABC Radio National breakfast programme, Stanley Johnson said the row was "not actually of his [son's] making" and that Boris was having to live with the "unwarranted" leak.

"To the best of my knowledge and belief the row [...] to do with the NHS was not actually of his making. He had no wish, as it were, to go public with that private view," he said.

"His view was that, yes, it does need more money but he did not intend to fight that in public before the cabinet discussion. That was to the best of my knowledge [...] an unwarranted leak and he is living with that."

Earlier this week, the BBC reported that Johnson was hoping to use the cabinet meeting to kick off a debate about healthcare spending in the midst of winter pressures on the NHS. Johnson's bid to secure extra funding was supposedly driven by a fear that the Prime Minister was ready to abandon the NHS as an electoral cause, allowing Jeremy Corbyn to make it a key campaign point for Labour.

"The prime minister and a large number of cabinet ministers made the point that cabinet discussions should take place in private," a spokesman for Number 10 told the Guardian on Wednesday.

"Regarding the future and how any return of EU contribution would be spent, the prime minister reminded cabinet that the government has consistently said we will spend money on our priorities such as housing, schools and the NHS."

Asked whether his son could one day become prime minister, Johnson senior replied: "I think Boris is doing a superb job as foreign secretary.

"Now will he be prime minister? That is another question altogether. I have a lot of children out there, some of them are in the government at the moment. Who knows. Mrs May is firmly there, she is committed."