Below is the text of the written answers relating to Prime Minister’s Question Time from 31st October 1994.
Conduct of Public Life
Mr. Llew Smith: To ask the Prime Minister what recent meetings he has had with Lord Nolan; and what has been their purpose.
The Prime Minister: I met Lord Nolan on Wednesday 26 October to discuss various matters relating to the committee on standards in public life, including appointments of Members.
Mr. Hanson: To ask the Prime Minister what is the proposed remuneration of the chairman and board members of the proposed committee on standards in public life.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 28 October 1994]: I shall publish this information shortly.
Mr. Beith: To ask the Prime Minister for what reasons peers are not included in the categories of persons to be considered by the Committee on the conduct of public life in respect of their parliamentary duties.
The Prime Minister: It is open to the committee to examine the standards of conduct to be observed by peers as parliamentarians, as Ministers and, indeed, as holders of other public offices.
Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Prime Minister if he will include in the terms of reference of the body which will investigate standards of public life the issue of funding of political parties.
The Prime Minister: No. The funding of political parties has already been the subject of an investigation by the Home Affairs Select Committee. Under the terms of reference I announced on 25 October, it is open to Lord Nolan’s committee to consider concerns that appointments or other Government decisions may be influenced by political contributions.
Mr. Llew Smith: To ask the Prime Minister pursuant to his oral statement on standards of conduct in public life of 25 October, Official Report, col. 757 , if he will indicate (a) who was the informant mentioned by the Cabinet Secretary in his report, (b) what proposals for a deal were put to him by the intermediary and (c) when he was first contacted by the intermediary.
The Prime Minister: I have nothing further to add to the statement that I made to the House on Public Life (Standards of Conduct) on 25 October 1994, Official Report, columns 757-770, and to the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Dartford (Mr. Dunn) on 25 October 1994, Official Report, columns 521-22 .
Mr. Alton: To ask the Prime Minister what plans he has to ratify the 1980-81 United Nations convention on inhumane weapons.
The Prime Minister: We continue to work actively towards ratification of the United Nations weaponry convention review conference. Meanwhile, we do, of course, adhere strictly to the provisions of the convention.
Mr. Llew Smith: To ask the Prime Minister if he will make it his policy that Ministers should give substantive answers to questions from hon. Members about the contents of books or reports in areas for which they have responsibility, which are published by sources other than the Minister’s Department or a non-departmental public body operating in the area or public policy for which the Minister has responsibility.
The Prime Minister: It is for individual Ministers to decide how to answer parliamentary questions.
Mr. Al Fayed
Mr. Byers: To ask the Prime Minister on what date the note of his meeting with the informant acting on behalf of Mr. Al Fayed was passed to the Director of Public Prosecutions.
The Prime Minister: On 20 October 1994.
Mr. Madden: To ask the Prime Minister, pursuant to his oral answer to the hon. Member for Barnsley, West and Penistone (Mr. Clapham), of 20 October, Official Report, column 420, what arrangements were proposed to him on behalf of Mr. Al Fayed; and if he will make a further statement.
The Prime Minister: I have nothing further to add to the statement that I made to the House on Public Life (Standards of Conduct) on 25 October, Official Report 757-70.
Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister what representations he has had from the Arab league about Libyan sanctions.
The Prime Minister: I have received no such representations.
Al Fayed Brothers (Citizenship Application)
Mr. Madden: To ask the Prime Minister what representations have been made to him (a) by right hon. or hon. Members or (b) others concerning the applications for British citizenship by Mr. Mohamed Al Fayed and Mr. Ali Al Fayed.
The Prime Minister: So far as I am aware, none.
Public Sector Pay Review Bodies
Sir Giles Shaw: To ask the Prime Minister what is the current membership of the public sector pay review bodies.
The Prime Minister: The membership of the pay review bodies is as follows:
Review Body on Senior Salaries
Lord Nickson KBE DL (Chairman)
Professor George Bain
Sir Cecil Clothier KCB QC
Mr. Gordon Hourston
Sir Anthony Wilson
Sir Michael Perry CBE
Sir Sydney Lipworth QC
Mrs. Rosemary Day
Miss Patricia Mann
Mrs. Yve Newbold
Mr. Mark Sheldon
Review Body on Nursing Staff, Midwives, Health Visitors and Professions Allied to Medicine
Mr. Michael Bett CBE (Chairman)
Mr. Jan Hildreth
Miss Anne Mackie OBE
Professor Gillian Raab
Professor George Thomason CBE
Miss Diana Whittingham
Ms Ruth Lea
Mrs. Sheila Gleig
Armed Forces Pay Review Body
Mr Gordon Hourston (Chairman)
Mr Michael Bolton
Mr John Cox CBE
Mr John Crosby
Mrs Dorothy Venables
Air Chief Marshal Sir Roger Palin KCB OBE
Mr Guy Neely
Review Body on Doctors’ and Dentists’ Remuneration
Mr Brandon Gough (Chairman)
Mr Douglas Boyd
Ms Christina Boyden
Mrs Sally Field
Dr Elizabeth Nelson
Professor George Thomason CBE
Mr Dennis Fredjohn MBE
Mr David Penton
School Teachers’ Review Body
Mr John Gardiner (Chairman)
Mrs Brigita Amey
Mr Alan Cox CBE
Mrs Gill Rostron
Mrs Anna Vinton
Mr Michael Harding
Mrs Julia Cuthbertson
Mr Philip Halsey CB LVO
Mr. Wilson: To ask the Prime Minister what steps he has taken to assure himself that the right hon. Member for Norfolk, South (Mr. MacGregor) has, in all respects, complied with the guidelines laid down in “Questions of Procedure for Ministers”, and if he will make a statement.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 25 October 1994]: Ministers have the responsibility to ensure that they comply with the guidelines in “Questions of Procedure for Ministers”. I have no reason to think that my right hon. Friend failed to do so.
Mr. Wilson: To ask the Prime Minister what declaration of continuing association with Messrs Hill Samuel was made by the right hon. Member for Norfolk, South and on what date.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 25 October 1994]: Because of his former association with Messrs Hill Samuel, my right hon. Friend gave instructions to his Department that he should play no part in the selection process, in 1993, of financial advisers to the Department of Transport for the channel tunnel rail link.
Mr. Wilson: To ask the Prime Minister on what date the right hon. Member for Norfolk, South intimated (a) his desire to leave the Government and (b) his intention to rejoin Hill Samuel.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 25 October 1994]: As was made clear in my right hon. Friend’s resignation letter of 20 July, he had advised me earlier in the summer of his intention to leave the Government. I was informed of my right hon. Friend’s decision to take up his appointment on 6 October.
Mr. Wilson: To ask the Prime Minister what intimation of potential conflict of interest was made by the right hon. Member for Norfolk, South when direction was given by his Department to the British Railways Board to establish a vendor unit; and on what date.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 25 October 1994]: British Rail decided to establish a vendor unit in order to co-ordinate sales: no direction was given by the Department of Transport.
Mr. Wilson: To ask the Prime Minister what arrangements were intimated by the right hon. Member for Norfolk, South under paragraphs 128 to 134 of “Questions of Procedure for Ministers”; and if advice was sought by him from the then Prime Minister’s Private Secretary in terms of paragraph 132.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 25 October 1994]: My right hon. Friend’s pension arrangements are a matter for him, but I am advised that they corresponded with the requirements of paragraphs 128-134 of “Questions of Procedure for Ministers”, and no consultation with the then Prime Minister’s Private Secretary was therefore necessary.
Mr. Wilson: To ask the Prime Minister if he will list the contracts awarded by Her Majesty’s Government to Messrs Hill Samuel between June 1979 and July 1994, with the value in each case.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 25 October 1994]: The information requested is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Byers: To ask the Prime Minister on how many occasions since 1 January 1991 the Cabinet Secretary has advised individual Ministers of his opinion on their conduct in relation to “Questions of Procedure for Ministers”; which Ministers were involved; and on what dates the opinion was given.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 28 October 1994]: Discussions between Ministers and the Cabinet Secretary are private.
Dr. Wright: To ask the Prime Minister (1) if he will give details of the current inquiry into the system of public appointments and identify (a) when it was established, (b) its terms of reference, (c) its composition and (d) when it will report;
(2) if he will give details of the current inquiry into the governance of quangos; when it was established; what are its terms of reference; what is its composition; and when it will report.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 25 October 1994]: As I told the House on 20 October, I set up a working group in May to review the guidance to Departments on public appointments procedures. The terms of reference for the review are:
“To examine, in consultation with departments, the principles that should govern the membership of public bodies and the methods used to identify potential candidates, including questions relating to equal opportunities and multiple appointments, and the procedures leading to disqualification from or premature termination of appointments; and to consider whether amendments and additions need to be made to the Guide on Public Appointments procedures’.” The working group is chaired by the director of the public appointments unit and includes representatives from the Department of Employment, the Department of the Environment, the Department of Health, the Lord Chancellor’s Department, the Scottish Office, the Department of Trade and Industry, the Treasury and the Welsh Office. My right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and I expect to receive the working group’s report in a few weeks’ time. I have also asked my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster to look across the board at appointments to all public bodies and to make any further recommendations he thinks necessary. We shall be making any recommendations, together with the working group’s report, available to the committee on standards in public life.
In addition, the Office of Public Service and Science and the Treasury are preparing, in consultation with Departments generally, a revision of “Non-Departmental Public Bodies: A Guide for Departments”. This is intended to assist sponsor Departments on a range of matters concerning non-departmental public bodies. The guide was last revised in March 1992. Work on a further revision began in May, and the aim is to produce the revised guide when the parallel work on public appointments has been concluded. This, too, will be made available to the committee on standards in public life.
Economic and Finance Council
Sir Teddy Taylor: To ask the Prime Minister if he will take steps to co-ordinate Government policy between the Treasury and the Home Office on the reduction of fines for law breaking in respect of persons, authorities or nations who refused to pay them, in relation to the decision made at the Council of Finance Ministers of the European Union on 21 October.
The Prime Minister: The decision taken at ECOFIN on 21 October was to increase the so-called “fine” imposed by the Commission on Italy and Spain by 1.1 b ecu, and not to reduce the penalties.
Although disallowance decisions taken by the Commission under the common agricultural policy are often colloquially described as fines, they are in fact completely different from fines imposed by criminal courts. I believe that co-ordination between the Treasury and the Home Office on these areas of policy is satisfactory.
Cabinet Secretary’s Investigation
Mr. Alfred Morris: To ask the Prime Minister, pursuant to his oral answer of 20 October, Official Report, columns 420-22, in regard to the inquiry by the Cabinet Secretary, how many other cases there are of hon. Members who are now Ministers in respect of whom any inquiries are being or have been undertaken; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Prime Minister, pursuant to his oral answers of 20 October, Official Report, columns 420-22 , (1) which other hon. Members are being questioned by the Permanent Secretary to the Cabinet;
(2) if he will (a) make a statement on the Cabinet Secretary’s report when it is complete and (b) publish (i) its contents, including the nature of the complaints and where they originated, (ii) the evidence requested, (iii) details of interviews conducted, (iv) a full summary of points considered and (v) the conclusions drawn.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 27 October 1994]: I refer the right hon. and hon. Members to the statement that I made to the House on Public Life (Standards of Conduct) on 25 October 1994, Official Report, columns 757-770, and to the answer that I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Dartford (Mr. Dunn) on 25 October 1994, Official Report, columns 521-22.
Mr. Byers: To ask the Prime Minister, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Dartford (Mr. Dunn) of 25 October, Official Report, column 521-22, if he will identify the informant acting on behalf of Mohamed Al Fayed and all Ministers against whom allegations were made; and what documentary evidence has been requested and examined by the Cabinet Secretary as part of his investigation.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 28 October 1994]: The answer to the first part of the question is no. On the identity of the Ministers against whom allegations were made, I refer the hon. Gentleman to the answer I gave today to the right hon. Member for Manchester, Wythenshawe (Mr Morris). On the third part of the question, I have nothing to add to the reply that I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Dartford (Mr. Dunn), on 25 October 1994 Official Report, columns 521-22.
Mr. Alex Carlile: To ask the Prime Minister pursuant to his oral answer to the hon. Member for Barnsley, West and Penistone (Mr. Clapham) of 20 October, Official Report, columns 420-21, how many Ministers are being or have been investigated by Sir Robin Butler; when he expects to receive the report; and if he will make a statement.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 26 October 1994]: My right hon. and learned Friend the Home Secretary and my right hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury have confirmed that they were the subject of allegations investigated at my request by the Cabinet Secretary. No other Ministers were involved.
Mr. Ian Greer
Mr. Byers: To ask the Prime Minister on what dates on and after 29 September he has met Mr. Ian Greer of Ian Greer Associates.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 28 October 1994]: None.
Dr. Wright: To ask the Prime Minister (1) what is the total number of public appointments which he is responsible for making or which require his approval; and if he will include figures for the Crown appointments on which he is responsible for advising Her Majesty the Queen; (2) pursuant to his answer of 17 January, Official Report , columns 367-68 , if he will give details of the Crown appointments on which he is responsible for advising Her Majesty the Queen.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 27 October 1994]: Further to the information on appointments already given to the hon. Member, I am listing those appointments on which at the present time I advise Her Majesty the Queen. The total number of appointments for which I am responsible, including those on which I advise Her Majesty the Queen, cannot be accurately calculated since I have discretion in some cases as to how many appointments I make; and in the case of Church appointments some vacancies fall casually and unpredictably to the Crown by virtue of the Royal Prerogative.
Appointments made by the Queen on the advice of the Prime Minister
Bank of England
Governor and Deputy Governor
Executive and Non-Executive Directors
British Broadcasting Corporation
Governors, including the Chairman and Vice-Chairman
Chancellor of the County Palatine of Durham
Chairman and six others
The Churches Conservation Trust
Chairman and members
Head of the Home Civil Service (Cabinet Secretary)
Board of Customs and Excise, Chairman, Deputy Chairman and Commissioners
Board of Inland Revenue, Chairman and Commissioners including Deputy Chairman
Clerk of the Crown in Chancery
Civil Service Commissioners
Her Majesty’s Printer of Acts of Parliament (Controller of the Stationery Office)
Procurator General (Solicitor General)
Comptroller and Auditor General
Tower of London
Captain of Deal Castle
Crown Estate Commissioners
Data Protection Registrar
Ecclesiastical Appointments in England
Archbishops of Canterbury and York
Diocesan and Suffragan Bishops
Crown Livings c. 200
Appointments under the Royal Prerogative and Sede Vacante Ecclesiastical Appointments in Scotland
Her Majesty’s High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland
Governor of the Isle of Wight
Health Service Commissioners for England, Wales and Scotland Interception of Communications Tribunal
Vice President and members
Ministers of Her Majesty’s Government
Senior Judiciary in England
Lord Chief Justice of England
Master of the Rolls
President of the Probate, Divorce and Admiralty Division Lords of Appeal in Ordinary
Lord Justices of Appeal
Court of Ecclesiastical Causes Reserved
Senior Judiciary in Scotland
Lord Justice Clerk
Lord Justice General and Lord President of the Court of Session in Scotland
Judge of the Arches Court of Canterbury and the Chancery Court of York
King Edward’s Hospital Fund for London
President, or three Governors
Lord Clerk Register of Scotland
Lord Great Chamberlain
Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports
Lord-Lieutenants and Vice Lord-Lieutenants of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland
Clerk of the Parliaments
Clerk of the House of Commons
Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration
Honorary Physicians to The Queen
Police Complaints Authority
Public Works Loans Board
Chairman, Deputy Chairman and Commissioners
Receiver-General and Deputy Receiver-General of Jersey
Receiver-General of Guernsey
Royal Patriotic Fund Corporation Members, including President Standing Royal Commissions, including Millennium Commission Scholastic Appointments
Regius Professors of Oxford and Cambridge
School of Oriental and African Studies Governing Body members Provost of Eton
Principal of King’s College, Cambridge
Master of Trinity College, Cambridge
Master of Church College, Cambridge
Security Service Tribunal
Members, President and Vice President