Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Third Report


Statutory Declaration by Mr Jaffer Kapasi OBE DL MKD

  I Jaffer Kapasi of . . . . will say as follows:

  1.  An article appeared in The Sunday Times on 14 May 2000 on page 10 written by David Leppard, Gareth Walsh and Paul Nuki.

  2.  The article falsely claims that I have made payments to Keith Vaz MP.

  3.  Mr Leppard came to my office outside business hours, uninvited and unannounced, on Thursday 11 May 2000. I declined to be interviewed yet despite this, Mr Leppard continued to speak to me, saying our conversation was off the record. He put a number of allegations to me. His tone became aggressive and hectoring. In order to get rid of him, I did respond that I had receipts for any money given to Mr Vaz, knowing in my own mind that I had never given him personally any money. Mr Leppard also said that he was aware of the confidential correspondence from Mrs Filkin to myself. Eventually he left.

  4.  I clarified the position when Mr Leppard subsequently telephoned me on my mobile phone on Friday 12 May 2000 during the week of publication of the article and stated, as is the case, that I have never made payments of any kind to Mr Vaz MP nor has he ever asked me to do so. I have made a donation of £52.00 to the Sahara Trust as set out in my letter to Elizabeth Filkin of 28 March 2000 annexed hereto as "JK1" in a bundle of correspondence passing between Ms Filkin and me. The sum of £52 was chosen because this is for me a holy number. I exhibit to this Statutory Declaration at "JK2", a copy of Keith Vaz's letter to me of 29 August 1995, confirming receipt of the donation.

  5.  To the best of my recollection, I have never spoken to Gareth Walsh. I believe that Paul Nuki was on the telephone with Mr Leppard, when he telephoned me on Friday 12 May.

  6.  I told Mr Leppard that in March 2000, I wrote to Elizabeth Filkin the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards to confirm that no payments were ever made to Mr K Vaz in return for any assistance in securing planning permission.

  7.  The article falsely states that I wanted Mr K Vaz to influence the thinking of the Council on the proposal to give the planning approval to build on a site at Manor Farm, Hamilton.

  8.  I confirm that the contents of this statement are true.

  Declared this 25 day of May 2000 at 39 Warren Street London W1P before a solicitor duly authorised to administer Oaths.

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