16. E-mail to the Commissioner from
Ms Belinda McCammon, 18 November 2003 |
Subject: Re: Complaint against Mr Iain Duncan
My apologies for the delay in responding to you.
position you held whilst you were working for Mr Duncan Smith
and your duties in that position;
I was a press secretary for the duration of the leadership
campaign and then went into the Leaders Office in the same capacity.
dates in question;
From the moment he became Leader (September 13th
2001 from recollection) until end of Jan 2002.
opportunity you had from that position to observe any activity
by Mrs Duncan Smith;
I was in the corner office occupied by all the Leaders
Office staff and as a result of needing to work with his private
secretary (Annabelle Eyre) and his diary secretary (Andrew Whitby-Collins)
along with the majority of staff at the time, were in and out
of the office that they occupied.
you observed any such activity, and if so what it was;
On several occasions during the course of my employment
I observed Mrs Duncan Smith come into the office. These were when
she was required to come into London to attend a function. During
these times she took the opportunity to go through the diary with
the diary secretary. As there were only three desks (all occupied)
in a small office space she would often kneel on the floor to
go through any additions or changes with Andrew. I knew, from
hearing conversations between Andrew (with Mrs Duncan Smith on
the other end) that he would call her to check on whether she
was available for certain functions or if any dates clashed with
family/school activities. I was not aware that she was working
from home on anything than co-ordinating the diary for the benefit
of the family and for when Iain Duncan Smith was at home, to ensure
it was up to date.
you were aware of any concerns that might have been held about
Mrs Duncan Smith's employment and if so the nature of those concerns,
by whom they were held, when they came to your attention and what,
if anything, you know was done about them;
I had no concerns because I was not aware that Mrs
Duncan Smith was employed as a diary secretary. From my understanding
the diary secretary would check with her on a regular basis if
Iain Duncan Smith was not contactable or if he needed to keep
her informed of the Leaders future plans. I did not think the
involvement was anything more than a politician's spouse being
kept in the loop. I was only made aware of the concerns when I
read them through Sky News on the internet, from New Zealand.
The months that I was in the leaders office was a chaotic and
disorganised time so I certainly had not reason to think that
there were any concerns in this particular area.
there is any other relevant matter relating to any of the different
strands of the complaint against Mr Duncan Smith which I have
described that you would wish to bring to my attention.
I have nothing else that I would consider to be relevant.
Please don't hesitate to email or call me for clarification
of any of these points.
18 November 2003