Wednesday, June 11, 2008

cleaning up

There was a bit in the Telegraph this morning about the £86,000 pounds which Lib Dem MEPs have paid into the party.

Andrew Duff was quoted saying that, in effect, all this money has come out of their own pockets and has in no way been creamed off from their expenses.

We think a separate, more interesting question relates to the MEPs who use Cowley Street as their service provider for staff. The Indie named Andrew Duff, Fiona Hall, Bill Newton Dunn and Sarah Ludford as doing that. So you would be talking £650,000 a year, or £6.5 million over a decade. That's not small beans for a third party.



However, the party is not willing to divulge either who the money is used to employ or how much has been received. The data will not show up on the electoral commission website.

When we rang their press office their spokeswoman said those pieces of information are "not something that is a matter of public interest" and suggested that "we have been very transparent." She also pointed to Nick Clegg's recent proposal for a code of conduct.

The Lib Dem press office did however say that all such money was kept in a seperate bank account, and was spent purely of staffing costs.

That's all good, but the problem is that party leaders need to show us, rather than just tell us that they are being transparent .

It's no good in the current climate to make a speech about transparency, but then refuse to say how you are spending public funds. If Nick Clegg wants the Lib Dems to be the clean party, then he has to publish the numbers...

1 comment:

euroQuizz said...

Quelle était la monnaie de la Solvénie avant son adhésion à l'euro ?

On peut -aussi- apprendre l'Europe et ses institutions en s'amusant : http://euroquizz.com