Labour MP for the Rhondda. If you are a constituent with a casework query, please contact my office on 01443 442521.
2 added to My Authors
Jun 30 • 8 tweets • 2 min read
The Foreign Affairs Committee has been far more clear sighted than Government over Russia.
Our Moscow’s Gold report warned them in 2018. Today we publish a new report.
Ministers’ complacency over “morally bankrupt billionaires using the UK as a safe deposit box” has led to
“assets laundered through the UK … financing President Putin’s war in Ukraine”.
“The government’s unwillingness to bring forward legislation to stem the flow of dirty money is likely to have contributed to the belief in Russia that the UK is a safe haven for corrupt wealth.”
May 24 • 8 tweets • 2 min read
The international withdrawal from Afghanistan has been a disaster in terms of planning, execution, and consequences for the UK’s wider interests. It was a betrayal of our partners in the country and, worst of all, undermined the security of the United Kingdom by encouraging
our enemies to act against us.
It might be convenient to blame FCDO officials or military intelligence for these failures, but ministers should have been driving this policy. The fact that the Foreign Office’s senior leaders were on holiday when Kabul fell marks a
May 1 • 8 tweets • 2 min read
Parliamentary Standards and employment - another thread.
I have long supported changes to the employment rules in parliament and tried to introduce a change in 2008, which inspired fury from many MPs. So I support Mr Speaker’s call today. Obviously any change would require
all party agreement and support from staff and unions.
But the government only last week opposed mandatory standards training for MPs.
And while a new beefed up HR department with mandatory training would definitely improve working conditions and root out some bad behaviour
Apr 30 • 8 tweets • 2 min read
Standards and Parliament. A thread.
Parliament is no different from anywhere else. It should be a safe working environment for everyone, MPs, clerks, researchers, cleaners, visitors. Any allegations of bullying and sexual misconduct have to be taken seriously.
I’m glad we have an Independent complaints and grievance scheme, which guarantees anonymity and confidentiality for people who want to make claims. It’s an essential part of changing the culture in Parliament. We also need clear rules and a code of conduct that are properly
Apr 13 • 6 tweets • 2 min read
I’ve been asked (including by Tories) what the Standards Committee which I chair could or couldn’t do re #partygate. Under standing orders we only proceed if the independent parliamentary commissioner for standards has launched an investigation and found a breach of the rules.
She then sends a memorandum to the committee. We consider it and ask the member for comments in writing or in person. If we uphold the commissioner’s view we propose a sanction which has to be tabled by the government and voted on by the House. Witness, the Paterson case.
Apr 10 • 8 tweets • 2 min read
I’ve been thinking about the PM visit to Kyiv.
First, some praise. I’m glad he went. I’m glad 🇬🇧 is standing with 🇺🇦 and providing military equipment. I hope we can and will do more.
Now the buts. 1. The uk was woefully ill-prepared both in terms of sanctions legislation
which the FCDO knew was not fit for purpose from at least 2019. We ended up being slow and requiring emergency legislation AFTER the invasion which we were predicting last October. 2. The government’s refusal to act on dodgy Russian money and the findings of the Russia Report
Mar 31 • 6 tweets • 1 min read
I used to be a priest in the Church of England, and youth chaplain for the diocese of Peterborough. I was going through my own spiritual journey, understanding or coming to terms with my sexuality, but what really frightened me was when I saw Christians, priests, pastors
missionaries and ordinary Christians latch on to a young person and fill them with self-hatred because of their sexuality. The damage done was immense. Guilt, shame and self loathing can last a lifetime and ruin many other lives en route.
Feb 12 • 9 tweets • 2 min read
The Tories got the relationship with Russia wrong from the moment Cameron arrived in Downing Street. They wanted to do more business with Russia because it was a BRIC economy and they wanted to press the reset button. Some of us warned that after the murder of Litvinenko
this was a fool’s errand because Putin respects strength not compromise. I warned repeatedly about his territorial ambitions and the difficulty for uk businesses trading in manifestly corrupt Russia. But Tories told me I was wrong and organised with the Russian embassy to
Sep 3, 2021 • 5 tweets • 1 min read
* UK government half expected a rapid collapse of Afghan forces as early as April.
* They were explicitly warned about it in July.
* MoD wanted to escalate evacuation.
* PM and FS refused.
* They only changed travel advice on 6 Aug.
* FS went on holiday on 8 Aug. 1/5
* The Government failed to put together a list of UK nationals and those who stood by us who would/might need evacuation.
* Home Sec failed to put in place resettlement plans.
* The government ran 3 schemes for evacuation/resettlement in 3 departments, causing further chaos. 2/5
May 28, 2020 • 4 tweets • 1 min read
What an unmitigated mess. Govt summons parliament for Tuesday 2 June and lets remote voting and hybrid sessions lapse. It insists 650 MPs vote through narrow lobbies in 15 minutes without checking that this is COVID compliant. Public Health England declare the lobbies unsafe 1/4
The govt dreams up another scheme - we all join a 1.3k queue to vote. Public Health England says this is no better. But Govt has tabled the highly controversial Gerrymandering Parliamentary Constituencies Bill for Tuesday with votes at 10pm. So now... 2/4