Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Third Report

Appendix 4: Letter to the Clerk of the Committee from Mr John Mann and Mr Kevan Jones, 26 March 2007

The paragraphs in the report of the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards referring to ourselves miss three important factual matters.

Firstly the concern about the misuse of dining facilities was originated by the press and the Sunday Times newspaper, and we congratulate the Sunday Times, the Guardian and others for their investigating of this matter. Without press delving this matter would not have come to our attention.

Secondly at the request of the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards we agreed not to put more complaints of a similar nature in. We have much more evidence of misuse of dining facilities by additional Conservative MPs and Peers not previously named. The Parliamentary Commissioner specifically requested that we stop making individual complaints as he considered that the ones already submitted were 'illustrative' of the situation.

Thirdly we attempted to raise these matters in other ways, in advance of the complaint to the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, including to the Administration Committee, written questions and orally on the floor of the House.

Our complaint was and is a generic complaint about the systematic use of dining facilities to fundraise by the Conservative Party and the Committee on Standards and Privileges needs to consider how such generic complaints are to be raised and dealt with in the future.

Just last week […..] hosted a dinner for the United and Cecil, despite this enquiry, and […..] a Patrons Club dinner. Details of both are attached.[103]

Having run a gauntlet of threats and abuse from Conservative MPs our concern remains the inequity of these facilities being misused by just one Party and the loss of these facilities to decent organisations such as charities because of the industrial scale of this misuse.

103   Not printed. Back

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