George Osborne's editorship of the London Evening Standard "makes a mockery" of the independence of the British media, a spokesman for Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn warned on Friday (17 March).

The reaction comes just hours after the shock announcement from proprietor Evgeny Lebedev that the former Chancellor will succeed Sarah Sands in May.

The appointment has been met with a backlash after it emerged that Osborne would stay on as the MP for the Greater Manchester seat of Tatton, for which he earns an annual salary of £75,000.

"George Osborne's appointment as editor of the Evening Standard is yet another example of the establishment revolving door, a closely knit clique who are holding back the British people," the spokesperson for Corbyn told IBTimes UK.

"The appointment makes a mockery of the independence of the media. It takes multitasking to a new level and is an insult to the electors he is supposed to serve. We are looking forward to an early by-election so the people of Tatton are properly served in Parliament."

Osborne, 45, has acquired a string of jobs after he was booted out of Number 11 by Theresa May in the wake of the EU referendum last June. News of his latest appointment broke as the Conservatives held their Spring conference in Cardiff, Wales, with the move overshadowing May's keynote speech.

A senior party source looked caught off-guard when approached by IBTimes UK, admitting that he had no prior knowledge of Osborne's new journalism job."I wasn't aware of it, but I'm here [not in London]," the source said.

Statement from George Osborne

"This is such an exciting and challenging job and I'm thrilled to take it on. The Evening Standard is a great paper, testimony to the hard work of Sarah Sands and the impressive team, and to the investment of its owners. I look forward to working with, learning from and leading this team of dedicated professionals.

"Growing up as a Londoner, I've always known that the Evening Standard is an institution that plays a huge part in the life of the city and its people. Now it is a great honour that I can play a part as leader of the editorial team making the Evening Standard the definitive voice of the world's most exciting city.

"I am proud to be a Conservative MP, but as editor and leader of a team of dedicated and independent journalists, our only interest will be to give a voice to all Londoners. We will be fearless as a paper fighting for their interests. We will judge what the government, London's politicians and the political parties do against this simple test: is it good for our readers and good for London? If it is, we'll support them. If it isn't, we'll be quick to say so.

"So much is now at stake about the future of our country and its capital city. I will remain in Parliament, where that future is debated. I was elected by my constituents in Tatton to serve them and I intend to fulfil that promise. I remain passionate about the Northern Powerhouse and will continue to promote that cause.

"Right from the first speech I gave about the North of England, I've said that London needs a successful north and the north benefits from its links to a global city like London. It's not a zero-sum game, but quite the opposite."