Dear Doctor Duguid…
We sense that you would like to see some changes regarding transparency and conflict of interest laws. Wouldn’t this be a good place to start?
How much did your construction business earn you in 2006, and were any of your contracts working on government projects? In other words, did any of your construction income flow from government – even if you were subcontracting for a firm that had the actual contract?
There are many of us in your area who hope that you personally will get aboard the transparency train – because it’s pulling out of the station and those who are not onboard… are not onboard.
Meanwhile in Britain, MP’s have to declare additional income…
British MP’s Reveal Outside Profits – As Part Of The Normal Business Of Being In Government
David Blunkett, the former cabinet minister, is on course to becoming a millionaire, it emerged yesterday.
Writing and broadcasting work have earned him more than half a million pounds on top of his MP’s salary since he quit the Cabinet for a second time 18 months ago.
According to the new register of MPs’ outside interests, at least £355,000 of that has come from his diaries, The Blunkett Tapes.
Mr Blunkett resigned as work and pensions secretary in Nov 2005 – less than a year after his resignation as home secretary.
The latest register of interests confirms, however, that Mr Blunkett has more than prospered on the backbenches.
His 800-page diaries and associated media work have generated at least £355,000 for Mr Blunkett so far – about £150,000 more than disclosed in a previous register update last November.
The extra income is made up of joint serialisation rights from The Guardian and The Daily Mail of up to £105,000.
Bloomsbury, the publisher, has also made a further payment of at least £80,000 on top of an earlier sum up to £165,000 disclosed last year by Mr Blunkett.
The income has all been paid into a company called Hadaw Productions and Investments Ltd, of which Mr Blunkett is a director. He, however, has insisted: “I have not yet drawn down any income from this directorship.”
In addition, Mr Blunkett has earned at least £145,000 from his weekly column for The Sun, plus up to £50,000 for speaking and other engagements. That is all on top of his MP’s salary of just over £60,000. Yet the new register confirms that Mr Blunkett and all of his MP colleagues are surpassed by William Hague’s ability to generate outside income.
Since 2005, the former Tory leader has received up to £790,000 from speaking events, media work and other engagements.
Just over half of that amount has rolled in since Mr Hague returned to the Tory frontbench as shadow foreign secretary in Dec 2005. He now typically earns up to £15,000 a time for speaking.
George Galloway is another high earner. The Respect MP for Bethnal Green and Bow has declared up to £305,000 for media and publishing work.
Not far behind is Ann Widdecombe, the former Tory Minister, who has earned up to £280,000 since 2005. Intriguingly, that includes up to £5,000 for appearing in a “forthcoming drama series” for the BBC, but she declined to shed any further light on this yesterday.
Television appearances are also proving lucrative for Labour MP Diane Abbott.
As well as a regular income for appearing on BBC1’s This Week on Thursday nights, she received a £14,326 “pre-production fee” for the BBC’s Play It Again programme in which she tries to learn the piano.
Tony Blair declared his holiday at Sir Cliff Richard’s villa in Barbados last summer and his winter trip to the Florida home of Robin Gibb.
The Prime Minister said that he had made charitable donations “in lieu” of the cost of the Barbados accommodation but did not reveal how much he had given.
Neither Gordon Brown nor David Miliband, his possible challenger to succeed Mr Blair this summer, had any declarations to make.
… continue reading this article at UK Telegraph (link here).