Ashby MP's five-day House of Commons suspension approved after 'breach of rules'

By Ashby Nub News Reporter

10th Jan 2023 | Local News

Image: BBC
Image: BBC

Ashby MP Andrew Bridgen has been suspended from the House of Commons for five sitting days.

The MP for North West Leicestershire was handed the sanction after the parliamentary watchdog concluded he had breached the MP's code of conduct.

The BBC website reports that Mr Bridgen's attempt to overturn the recommendation was dismissed in December.

A motion was approved by Parliament on Monday and the suspension is due to start today (Tuesday).

In November, the cross-party Commons Standards Committee found Mr Bridgen had breached rules by failing to declare his financial interests in Mere Plantations when writing to ministers about the company.

The Cheshire-based firm had donated money to Mr Bridgen's local party and funded a trip to Ghana.

Following an investigation, the committee concluded the MP had shown a "careless and cavalier" attitude to the rules and recommended suspending Mr Bridgen from the House of Commons for two days.

They also advised a further three-day suspension for his "unacceptable attack" on the parliamentary Standards Commissioner Kathryn Stone.

Appealing the decision, Mr Bridgen criticised the investigation as "flawed" arguing it had not fully considered the motivations of the person who had made the initial complaint.

He also defended his actions, saying he had been carrying out the duties of a constituency MP.

The Independent Expert Panel asked to consider his appeal concluded that the motivations of the complainant were "completely irrelevant" and that an exemption for an MPs constituency duties did not apply in his case.

Their report added that the sanctions "could properly and fairly have been more severe".

     

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