File note by the Parliamentary Commissioner
I telephoned Mr Kapasi to thank him for writing
to me but to say I had hard evidence of him saying something quite
different in other circumstances. He said he stood by his letter
but then asked me in detail about the procedure which I described.
I explained to him that if I had to report to the Committee relying
on his evidence or that of others which was in contradiction with
his evidence I would probably have to put his evidence to the
Committee and it was likely that his evidence would be published.
I therefore wanted to give him the opportunity of reflecting on
the contents of his letter before I did that.
We discussed the fact that he might be embarrassed
but that obviously his primary duty was to Parliament. He said
he would think about it and decide whether or not he wanted to
give me another letter or whether he wanted it to stand as it
was. He asked me who would find his expenses and I said the Committee
would pay for his fare to come to London if they decided they
wanted to see him. I said I was trying to ensure that he didn't
have to see me or the Committee because obviously if his evidence
was not in conflict with that of others that would not be necessary.
However, what I was most concerned about was that he gave me a
truthful account whatever it was, and if it was in conflict with
other witnesses, so be it. I made it clear that I was inviting
him to rethink the matter but that if he decided that the letter
that he already sent should stand, I would accept his decision.
We agreed that he would either write me another letter, in which
case I would return the one of 21 March to him or that he would
telephone me to say that he stood by the letter that he had sent
24 March 2000