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National Insurance


Asked by Lord Laird

9 Dec 2009 : Column WA136

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Department for Work and Pensions (Lord McKenzie of Luton): The available information has been placed in the Library.

Asked by Baroness Warsi

Lord McKenzie of Luton: The department undertakes rigorous checks on the identity of all adult national insurance number applicants and only when it is satisfied with the identity of an individual will a number be allocated.

There are limited occasions where it is identified that an individual has been issued two national insurance numbers in error. In this situation one of the numbers will be cancelled.

It is not possible to provide figures in respect of foreign nationals from this information. Figures for the past five full years and the latest part year are in the table:

Occasions when an individual has been issued more than one national insurance number and one number has then been cancelled
YearNumber of cases








1517 (see point 4 below)



2009 (part)



1. Figures relate to calendar years.

2. Figures for 2009 relate to the period 1 January to the 22 November.

3. Figures relate to the year the National Insurance Number was cancelled from the Department for Work and Pensions IT records.

4. The figure for 2007 is disproportionately high as it reflects an IT problem which occurred during the transfer of National Insurance Number accounts from the former Departmental Central Index to the improved Customer Information System. The problem was immediately rectified. The figure for 2007 (excluding these IT problem cases) is 562.

Source:Data is Department for Work and Pensions Management information.

In addition to the above table, a further 25 national insurance numbers were identified as having been incorrectly issued to individuals who did not satisfy

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that requirement shortly after the introduction of the proof of right to work requirement in 2006. These national insurance numbers were not cancelled as in isolation they do not provide access to the benefits system or right to work in the UK.



Asked by Lord Patten

The Minister for International Defence and Security (Baroness Taylor of Bolton): The UK fully supported the development of NATO's cyber defence policy, endorsed at the Bucharest summit in 2008, to enhance the protection of its critical communication and information systems against disruption through attack or illegal access. The policy includes provision of assistance to individual allies if requested. The UK has long been an advocate of the need for NATO's transformation to be a continual process to ensure that the alliance has the right capabilities and structures to meet current, emerging and enduring challenges to its security, including cyber defence. We have, therefore, also urged allies to consider NATO's role in tackling new threats, such as cyber attack, as part of the process of updating its strategic concept.

Northern Rock


Asked by Lord Laird

The Financial Services Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Myners): Northern Rock executives and senior management did not receive any cash bonuses in 2009.

Full details of directors' remuneration payable in 2009 were announced in Northern Rock's 2008 annual report, available from Northern Rock's website at

Pakistan: Torture


Asked by Lord Ahmed

9 Dec 2009 : Column WA138

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Kinnock of Holyhead): Former General Musharraf was Chief of Army Staff from October 1998 to November 2007. From consular records we are aware of 11 British nationals who have alleged that they were either tortured or mistreated while in Pakistani custody during that period. However, there are constraints on our ability to search records of past consular cases, and this figure should not therefore be taken as definitive.

When appropriate and with the permission of the individual involved we can raise, and have raised, reports of mistreatment of British nationals in detention in Pakistan at a senior level with the Pakistani authorities, as, for example, my right honourable friend the Foreign Secretary did in September. As part of our bilateral relationship, the UK and Pakistan conduct a Joint Judicial Co-operation Working Group. This group aims to establish a formal mechanism committing both parties to facilitate promptly requests for access to their own nationals who are being held by the other country's authorities.



Asked by Lord Laird

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Department for Work and Pensions (Lord McKenzie of Luton): The basic state pension is paid out of the National Insurance Fund. Benefits paid from the National Insurance Fund are part of annually managed expenditure, and any changes in benefit rates are accounted for in the Government's annually managed expenditure forecasts.

Pirates: Kenya


Asked by Lord Tebbit

The Minister for International Defence and Security (Baroness Taylor of Bolton): To date, eight suspected Somali pirates have been detained by the Royal Navy and transferred to Kenya for prosecution. A further 53 suspected pirates have been encountered during boarding operations. However, following detailed analysis of all physical evidence and witness statements, all suspects were released as it was assessed that there was insufficient evidence to be reasonably confident that a successful prosecution could be undertaken in either Kenya or (more recently) Seychelles. The subsequent destruction of any pirate equipment and weapons serves as a disruption measure and prevents their future use.

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Prisoners: Growing Food


Asked by Lord Hylton

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Justice (Lord Bach): Various land-based activities operate in public sector prisons providing employment places for up to 2,000 prisoners at any one time. This work provides opportunities for them to learn new skills and achieve sector-related qualifications valued by prospective employers.

Market and amenity gardening takes place in more than 100 public prisons. Where it is possible and/or appropriate to do so, food production takes place in more than 70 prisons under both protective cropping and in open conditions.

School Foods Trust


Asked by Lord Dykes

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Children, Schools and Families (Baroness Morgan of Drefelin): The Government have no plans to make the School Food Trust a statutory body. It is a company limited by guarantee and a charity.

Schools: Teacher Training


Asked by Baroness Hooper

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Children, Schools and Families (Baroness Morgan of Drefelin): The Government do not prescribe proportions of time to be spent on individual activities within initial teacher training (ITT). The Secretary of State has laid down the qualified teacher status (QTS) standards against which training providers must develop the design and delivery of their courses to enable trainees to demonstrate that they can meet the standards.

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The Secretary of State's ITT requirements (R2.4) expect that training provision will be designed and delivered to take account of individual training needs. This means that programmes will be adapted and tailored to take account of the skills, experiences and needs of all trainee teachers. The requirements also expect (R2.3) that providers will make available to trainee teachers a range of suitable resources to support them in meeting the QTS standards throughout course provision.

School leadership has a strong focus on helping teachers with value for money considerations in the selection and deployment of resources. This is typically devolved to departmental level in secondary schools, and within curriculum areas in the primary phase where middle leaders are expected to monitor value for money closely. There is a wide range of high quality resource material currently freely available to schools, including through the Teacher Training Resource Bank, Behaviour4learning, Multiverse, the Special Educational Needs portal and the subject resource networks.

Resources are also available through the national strategies, Qualifications and Curriculum Development Agency (QCDA), specialist schools and academies trust, the exam boards and all of the curriculum and subject associations.

In addition, there is a vast range of commercially available print and online materials available to schools. Through their subject training in ITT teachers will be taught how to discriminate and to make effective use of resources to support their teaching.

The Training and Development Agency for Schools (TDA) makes available to trainers and teachers a wide range of resources to support their professional development and their classroom practice through subject resource networks, links with the QCDA and the national strategies. The agency has developed a web-based database of professional development opportunities for the whole children's workforce in schools.

This contains nearly 5,000 development opportunities which are delivered by a range of organisations including schools, universities, subject associations, and private companies.

The TDA also provides online guidance to schools to support the effective impact evaluation of professional development. A review of the guidance is currently underway and the TDA is working closely with interested bodies on that.

Shipping: MV "Canna"


Asked by Lord Laird

The Secretary of State for Transport (Lord Adonis): Further to my Answer of 29 June 2009 (Official Report, col. WA 23) the MV "Canna" did not hold a valid passenger certificate between 1 and 11 September 2008.

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Sport and Recreation: Funding


Asked by Lord Moynihan

Lord Davies of Oldham: The information in the table has been provided by Sport England.

Lottery Funding

Financial YearLottery Funding Total £



























Grand Total


Exchequer Funding

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