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Plaid Cymru writing to Met Police asking them to investigate House of Lord honours

08 Nov 2021 4 minutes Read
Plaid Cymru MP Liz Saville Roberts in the House of Commons.

Plaid Cymru’s leaders say they are writing to the Met Police asking them to investigate peerages given to those who donated over £3m to the Conservative party.

The party’s Westminster leader, Liz Saville Roberts MP, said in the House of Commons that the police should investigate whether offences have been committed by the Conservative Party under the Honours Prevention of Abuses Act of 1925.

An investigation by The Sunday Times and Open Democracy on the weekend revealed that wealthy benefactors appeared to be almost guaranteed a peerage if they took on the temporary role as the party treasurer and increase their own donations beyond £3 million.

In the past two decades, all 16 of the party’s main treasurers — apart from the most recent, who stood down two months ago having donated £3.8 million — have been offered a seat in the Lords, they said.

Liz Saville Roberts said that she and Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price were “writing to the Metropolitan Police, asking them to conduct an investigation to determine whether offences are being committed by the Conservative Party under the Honours Prevention of Abuses Act of 1925”.

She also called for major reforms to the Westminster political system in light of a series of what she called “corruption scandals” following the Owen Paterson lobbying row.

In a speech in the House of Commons, where MPs can speak with legal immunity, Ms Saville Roberts said that “if the system cannot be reformed to stop corruption – perhaps the system is itself the problem”.

“Faith in Westminster politics is at an all-time low, thanks to this Government,” she said. “Major reforms are needed to regain trust.

“We need independent oversight of the Ministerial Code. Ban MPs from having second jobs, except for public service. Force Ministers to correct the record after giving misleading information in the Chamber. Scrap the House of Lords and replace it with an elected upper Chamber.

“But if the system cannot be reformed to stop corruption – perhaps the system is itself the problem.”

She closed by saying: “The people of Wales are seeing their representation here being reduced from 40 to 32 members. They see a government with a robust majority being able to ride roughshod over perfectly normal accepted ethical standards.

“The people of Wales will be asking whether this is the system that serves them best or if the people of Wales could do it better themselves.”

‘Corroded’

Her comments came after Conservative MP Owen Paterson resigned last week following a damning report from the cross-party Commons committee on standards.

It concluded that Paterson’s 14 approaches to ministers and public officials while being paid to advise companies were an “egregious” case and that he had brought parliament in to disrepute.

However rather than voting to discipline Owen Paterson, last week when Conservatives were given a three-line whip to support a proposal to set up a new committee, chaired by a Conservative MP, to draw up plans for a new appeals system.

250 MPs backed the proposal and opposition MPs vowed to boycott the committee before leader of the House Jacob Rees-Mogg announced a U-turn, saying any reforms to the standards system would need cross-party support.

Today Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has said Boris Johnson has “corroded trust” in MPs after a U-turn.

“When he says the rules to stop vested interests don’t apply to his friends, he corrodes that trust and when he deliberately undermines those charged with stopping corruption he corrodes that trust,” he said.

“And that is exactly what the prime minister did last week.”

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Tabor
Tabor
19 days ago

How can we call this country a democracy when the leaders of parliament and the lords are there only by graft and corruption??

Welsh_Siôn
Welsh_Siôn
19 days ago
Reply to  Tabor

We don’t. That’s why I prefer the term, “shamocracy”.

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2021
All Rights Reserved

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
19 days ago

She would have more chance writing to the North Wales police…

The Met is tasked with doing exactly the opposite…

Roderich Heier
Roderich Heier
19 days ago

I can understand constituency boundaries being redrawn to equal out, as much as possible, the number of voters in each constituency, but can someone tell me please why a fifth of constituencies in Cymru are going to disappear. Surely the population of Cymru is increasing so there should be more representation not less.

Welsh_Siôn
Welsh_Siôn
19 days ago
Reply to  Roderich Heier

Not justifying it – by ANY means – but I think the excuse is that England’s population is growing even faster. That may be the ‘official’ reason (which is probably, for that very reason, not the real reason, if you follow).

Don’t forget, England will be at +10, Scotland at -2, Northern Ireland no change and Cymru at -8 after this.

As I said upstream – this Disunited Kingdumb is a shamocracy. I want out.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
19 days ago

I can recall when the leader of Plaid Cymru Adam Price as a then MP tried to get justice for the people of Iraq and the families of the dead soldiers killed by George Bush Jnr & Tony Blair’s illegal Iraq War. But the corrupt Westminster system protected Blair from any citizen arrest and charge of war crimes. And to rub salt into those families open wounds, Blair then prospered greatly making ten of millions on the speech circuit in the U.S. when he left office. Blair’s got no shame. He’s a political psychopath. Who thinks that a change of… Read more »

Kerry Davies
Kerry Davies
18 days ago

Interesting note this morning that a sitting MP, Geoffrey Cox, is paid £400,000 a year to advise overseas governments how to avoid charges brought by the UK government of which he is part.
The fact that he seems to think it OK to stay in the British Virgin Isles and vote remotely while 4,000 miles away from his constituency is just incidental.

hdavies15
hdavies15
18 days ago

No point writing to the Met because it too is as much part of the problem as the Lords, the City Institutions and sundry other bodies that make up a thoroughly corrupt daisy chain of interconnected “influencers”.

Erisian
Erisian
18 days ago

We have witnessed, if not State Capture, then Conservative & Unionist capture by the very wealthy and business.
Time to limit all donations to political parties on a per-person basis and prevent corporate donations entirely.

Last edited 18 days ago by Erisian
Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
18 days ago
Reply to  Erisian

Add the horse racing lot, the landed gentry, the press and the new Raj…

Andrew Redman
Andrew Redman
17 days ago

The Labour Party rely on the donations from affiliated Trade Unions. These same Unions expect to influence labour Party policy. Two side of the same problem?

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