Bryant’s Undeclared Billionaire’s Bung

Section 72 of the Common’s Declaration of Members’ Interests states that “any relevant financial interest or benefit of whatever nature, whether direct or indirect, should be declared in debate, or other proceeding.” Section 74 says that it “is the responsibility of the Member, having regard to the rules of the House, to judge whether a financial interest is sufficiently relevant to a particular debate, proceeding, meeting or other activity to require a declaration.”

As head of the All Party Group on Russia you should would expect Chris Bryant to raise Russian issues more than most, and he has been one of the most vocal Putin critics. He even testified against Hancock’s suspected spy lover.

However since October Bryant has declared nearly £14,000 in payments from the Independent newspaper owned by Russian oligarch and fellow Putin critic, Alexander Lebedev. Since the billionaire signed Chris up, he has mentioned Russia on dozens of occasions in the House without a single declaration required in the rules above. Given his ongoing quest for strict probity in public office, it’s odd that he hasn’t mentioned this…

Bryant argued to Guido that the Indy is technically owned by a British citizen (Lebedev Jr,) but this is extremely disingenuous given that bachelor Evgeny only recently got British citizenship. A technicality that doesn’t alter the fact that Bryant is paid thousands by a Russian with political pretensions and ambitions…




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Quote of the Day

Stella Creasy at Jewish Labour fringe event…

“I was going to say something about how good it is being a Jew in the Labour party at the moment… but someone told me you guys don’t get irony.”

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