Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Third Report

Draft letter to Mr John Witherow, The Sunday Times, from Keith Vaz MP

  You may know that I telephoned you last week and spoke to Tony Bambridge.

  I am sure that you are familiar with this matter and that you have seen my fax to Ian Birrell dated 27 January 1995 and the copy fax which was sent with the entry in the Register and the letter from the former Registrar.

  On Monday I had an opportunity of speaking with the Registrar and he confirmed to me that all my entries were in order and there was no question of anything improper.

  This morning I have received another telephone call from Rajeev Syal. He has now made a total of eight calls to me. He telephoned the Registrar yesterday who referred him back to me. I have nothing further to add to what I have already said.

  During my complaint to the PCC last year you will know I expressed concern about other unsubstantiated allegations which Mr Syal had raised. I now have confirmation that a few weeks ago he telephoned another prominent businessman (who happened to be also of Asian origin) and asked him if he had given gifts to Paddy Ashdown. I do realise that he is up for a full-time job at the ST but I do think that this is scraping the barrel.

  I thought I should write just for the record.

2 February 1995

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