Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Eighth Report

Annex L


Letter to the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards

from Mr Michel Fallon MP

Thank you for sending me a copy of your draft report of 2nd May 2001.

Paragraph 20 is not accurate:

In line 5 the Chairman's name is Mr Duncan Bannatyne.

In line 8, your clerk has misinterpreted or misunderstood. I said I did not believe that there was anything in writing about the appointment, meaning between the dates of 22nd December, when it was offered, and 29th December, when it was registered. I checked my files to this effect whilst she was on the telephone to me in order to double check whether there was any specific letter of appointment, which there was not.

In view of this, I would also object to the whole of paragraph 23 which follows from this misinterpretation or misunderstanding. I certainly object to the third sentence of this paragraph and to the emphasis given to the word 'think' which is not apparent from the file note at annex F1.

The final sentence of the paragraph 20 is irrelevant: I only made this comment because I could not check immediately whether the change of name had taken effect subsequent to my appointment. It is now clear to me that this happened sometime previously because my entry in the Register shows the new name.

I have now checked the speech of 7th December. Again, though I was speaking about small businesses, it could be argued that I should have declared my interest in Just Learning Ltd and I apologise to you and the Committee for this oversight.

Finally, for the sake of completeness, I should add that I do not believe that I have ever spoken about my business interests in the House in any debate nor advocated them in any way whatsoever.

2 May 2001

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