Week 45: Prat – Simon Hughes

by Charlie_East_West on November 10, 2013

This week’s prat award goes to Liberal Democrat MP Simon Hughes for not telling parliament about six business related donations worth over £30,000, that were given to his local party – and linked to him.

The Standards and Privileges Committee said it had found no evidence of attempts to conceal the six donations because they were declared to the Electoral Commission, but added that Simon Hughes was an MP with huge experience, and as such, he should have properly updated Parliament.

The donations came from a variety of businesses – four were from IPA Consulting Ltd, one came from City Cruises Plc, and one from Southwark Metals Ltd.

Addressing the chamber in the House of Commons, Simon Hughes said, “I have of course admitted my mistakes and I apologised from the outset to the commissioner and to the committee…I will immediately register the outstanding interests as the committee recommends. I take full responsibility for these failures and I apologise unreservedly to the House.” – This is yet another example of a politician who apologises after the horse has bolted.

Even when I worked in parliament, it was a known fact that Simon Hughes was not exactly the most organised man in the world. But, it is one thing to jumble up a schedule, miss a meeting or two because of a double booking, or exist in a paper strewn office, but it is quite another not to tell parliament about a series of business donations to your local party.

Basically, Simon Hughes is a high profile public servant. He is an influencer of policy. He is a bloody MP. It is his job to play by the rules and standards set before him. His failure to do so may be just down to disorganised behaviour – but it is also unprofessional and tardy. Considering the donation sources came from business – it all looks a wee bit iffy. If he adopted such an attitude within many alternative workplaces across the country he would be in serious trouble – and potentially facing an early P45.

Prat of the week? Easy. It is Simon Hughes MP.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Mike Killingworth November 11, 2013 at 8:37 am

It may of course be his (admittedly rather odd) way of talking himself into retirement – he will be 64 when the next General Election is held and has sat for Bermondsey for 30 years.


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