Letter to the Parliamentary Commissioner
for Standards from the Rt Hon Dr John Reid MP
Thank you for your letter of 5th June 2000 and the
answers to the queries I raised.
I am reassured to some extent that circulation of
the material I was concerned about has been restricted to Mr Maxton
and that you have placed him under some duty of confidentiality.
You will appreciate I would rather this material had not been
circulated outwith your office at all and that the material I
referred to does not bear on Mr Maxton at all.
As to the other matter concerning witnesses I am
still somewhat uncertain. Your previous letter, of course, did
not request me to refrain from speaking to witnesses, but to anyone
at all apart from my legal advisers. I am grateful this has now
However, while I understand you may use your standard
clause regarding discussions in respect of witnesses I of course
am not a witness but the subject of the complaint. Inability on
my part to contact people will hamper preparation of my response
to you. If you do so wish to apply your standard clause to me
notwithstanding then I must ask you again for the source of this
power. I will also need to know who the other witnesses are so
that I do not approach them inadvertently. As you are doubtless
aware Mr Rowley has approached me on more than one occasion to
speak about the complaint. It did not occur to me then that he
was breaching some requirement you had placed on him. Where do
I stand if others contact me?
I have to say that your suggested date of 12 June
for my response is looking rather difficult to meet now. Again
a speedy reply to this letter as well as yesterday`s letter will
help the preparation of my response.
7 June 2000