MPs Who Exploit Their Positions for Cash

The Sunday Times is after Tony Baldry, the Conservative MP for Banbury, Oxfordshire, because he has made a habit of writing on his Commons notepaper to lobby African governments over the award of contracts to companies in which he has an interest. His correspondents included Vice-President Solomon Berewa in Sierra Leone regarding the awarding of a privatisation contract.

Scandalous is the word, when you realise that as chairman of the Commons International Development Committee, it is Baldry who is responsible for scrutinising the millions in government-to-government aid wasted in corrupt countries. Guido thought the idea was to alleviate Third World poverty, not to make profits in the Third World.

Baldry even used Commons notepaper to write to Hilary Benn, the International Development Secretary, on behalf of one of his companies. The matter has been referred to Sir Philip Mawer, the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, by George Foulkes, the Labour MP and former International Development minister.

Guido remembers another MP who wrote a letter on behalf of a company to further their interests. After this MP received a £125,000 donation to his party’s campaign funds he too wrote on his official notepaper to Adrian Nastase, the Prime Minister of Romania, urging that he sell his biggest state-owned enterprise to the donor, a foreign billionaire. The MP, when caught, lied to parliament that the billionaire’s company was British, when in fact, it was based in a Caribbean tax haven with only a handful of its 125,000 employees in the UK. This same MP wrote letters of thanks to convicted crook and billionaire backer of the Labour party, Nadhmi Auchi, who according to the Pentagon “served as Saddam Hussein’s principle international financial manipulator and bag man“. (The FBI, incidentally, currently want Nadhmi Auchi to help them with their inquiries.)

Who is the disgraceful MP who lied to parliament about letters written on official notepaper, in the interests of his billionaire backer, and wrote letters of thanks to another billionaire convicted crook? It was, of course, the MP for Sedgefield.




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