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  5. Suella Braverman not fired over speeding ticket


Suella Braverman not fired over speeding ticket

Ms. Braverman apologized for the 'distraction' her actions caused it. Credit: Leon Neal/Getty Images

Suella Braverman will remain home secretary after Rishi Sunak decided not to fire her, concluding she did not violate ministerial code in handling a speeding ticket.

The prime minister also refused to request a formal inquiry from his independent ministerial adviser, who has been consulted in the last 48 hours.

Ms Braverman expressed regret for reaching out to government officials for help after she was issued a speeding ticket and apologized for the “distraction” caused by her actions.

This means that Downing Street has effectively drawn a line under the line by sticking to Mrs. Braverman after two days of deliberation.

Some Conservative MPs earlier this week rallied around Ms. Braverman, who has emerged as a leading figure on the Conservative Party's right wing after running twice for leader last year.

The controversy centers on Mrs. Braverman's attempts to take a driving safety course instead of paying a speeding ticket, and how she sought advice from Home Office officials on the matter.

Braverman accelerates deadlines

Mr Sunak's decision, first made public by The Telegraph, was set out in a correspondence with Ms Braverman that was released Wednesday morning.

Mr. Sunak wrote: “I consulted with my independent adviser. He advised that no further investigation was required in this case, and I accepted that advice. Based on your letter and our discussion, I have decided that these issues do not constitute a violation of the ministerial code.

“As you already understood, more effective actions could have been taken in order not to arouse suspicion of violating the rules. However, I am sure that you take these matters seriously. You provided a detailed report, apologized and expressed regret.”

Prime Minister's Letter to the Home Secretary

Sir Laurie Magnus is the Prime Minister's Independent Ministerial Adviser on the interests stated in the letter.He can only initiate an investigation if requested by the Prime Minister and some MPs want to change this rule.

Opposition party figures called on Sir Laurie to investigate and criticized Mr. Sunak's decision.

The Liberal Democrats called this call a “cowardly excuse.”

Some Conservative MPs have already made clear their dissatisfaction with the attention drawn to the incident, with former minister Sir Edward Lee saying “moral outrage is laughable.”

The Minister of the Interior set out her account of what happened in a three-page letter to the Prime Minister, providing the most detailed description of the events.

Prime Minister's Home Secretary

In June 2022, when she was Attorney General, Ms Braverman was found to have been speeding.

She was told that she could take three points on her driver's license and pay a fine or take a safe driving course. She chose the latter and booked the course for the fall.

When she was named Secretary of the Interior on September 6, 2022, Ms Braverman asked civil servants if it was appropriate to continue attending the course, given her new role meant increased personal security.

Ms Braverman said that the matter was discussed with her chief private secretary, who was a senior civil servant in the Home Office and later worked in the Cabinet Decency and Ethics Department.

According to Ms. Braverman, as a senior civil servant in The Ministry of the Interior and the Ethics and Decency team said that government employees should not pick up the phone.

The Special Advisers, who are civil servants who are explicitly allowed to help ministers with political issues, then took up the matter.

There was discussion about whether Ms. Braverman should appear in an in-person driving safety course rather than an online course due to concerns that a participant might secretly film an online event.

In the end, Ms. Braverman decided to pay the fine in November 2022.

Ms. Braverman wrote in her letter: “I regret that my attempt to find a way to participate in the course in a way that satisfies These concerns have allowed some to interpret a potential conflict of interest.

“Looking back, I acknowledge that it would have been better to have taken points off and penalized beforehand.”

Toward the end of the letter, Ms. Braverman also expressed regret about her approach to the penalty for speeding and made some kind of apology.

“I was trying to find out if individual measures were possible, given my personal circumstances as a minister protected by security. I understand how some people interpreted this as a desire to avoid punishment – this was in no way the intention or the result, ”she said.

“However, given the fundamental importance of honesty in public life, I deeply regret that my actions could have led to this perception, and I apologize for the distraction.”


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