Labour and the Lib Dems are calling for an investigation into Suella Braverman after she sought advice about arranging a private speed awareness course.
The home secretary was caught speeding while attorney general last summer, and faced three points on her licence and a fine, or a course as part of a group. She tried to arrange a one-on-one course through civil servants and her adviser, the BBC has been told. A government source denied Mrs Braverman broke the ministerial code.
The reports, which first appeared in the Sunday Times, have triggered calls from the opposition parties for an investigation by the prime minister’s independent adviser on minister’s interests.
After being caught speeding, Mrs Braverman was offered the choice of either a fine and points on her driving licence, or a speed awareness course. A government source told the BBC the senior minister was “concerned” about her insurance premiums, and favoured doing a course. She asked civil servants about arranging a private course, citing security concerns about doing one as part of a group, but was told it was not a matter for the Civil Service to get involved in. Ms Braverman then asked a special adviser to try and arrange a one-on-one course.
When the course provider told her there was no option to do a private course - and after she was reappointed home secretary in Mr Sunak’s government - she opted to pay the fine and accept the points because she was “very busy” and did not have the time to do a course, the BBC has been told. The same government source refused to say whether Mrs Braverman’s motivation to do the course in private was to reduce the chances of her being recognised by members of the public.
Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper said the reports “suggests she has tried to abuse her position to get round the normal penalties so it is one rule for her and another for everyone else”.
Ms Cooper called for an “urgent investigation into what has gone on here”, saying the PM’s ethics adviser Laurie Magnus should examine “how this is possibly compatible with the ministerial code”.
Alistair Carmichael, the Liberal Democrats’ home affairs spokesman said Ms Braverman “should be urgently investigated by the ethics adviser and add her name to the near endless list of ministers who have had to undergo the same”.
No surprise there - Tory ministers expect privilege along with the “perks” …
Why is it that whenever somebody stands up for the good of the country the media find something to tarnish them with?
It’s usually because the somebody is a self-interested, self-serving Tory MP or minister …
Sometimes you just have to trust somebody Omah, and accept that people will be people. Who amongst us has not got a skeleton in the cupboard. My cupboard looks like a mortuary…
If we cast out every MP who has stepped out of line from time to time, who will we have left?
I believe there have been some good men and women thrown on to the scrap heap for things that had nothing to do with the way they did their job. This country is being run by the MSM in the name of free speech.
Thing is foxy, if you or me were facing a speeding fine we couldn’t ask to go on a one to one driver retraining course…as she did
Well, what makes this case worse is that the somebody involved is not just a Tory MP but was Attorney General and is now Home Secretary - somebody who shouldn’t attempt to use her position to bypass the due process of the law.
And because if they’re Tories it’s most likely they aren’t standing up for the good of the country, just for the good of themselves, the Tory cronies and the chumocracy
Well, exactly, just another example of their feelings of entitlement and the laws are only for us peasants
On the plus side, while she’s wealthy enough for a fine not to teach her a lesson about watching her speed, maybe the bad publicity she’s getting will and the roads will be safer because of it?
Or she could have shown some humility and done the course like mere mortals and really learned something
but if we could have a one to one mighten we take it
i think its just this sad jaded liebour party clutching at straws
dont they realise that their pettiness is driving life-long labour voter even farther away?
Yes, but the driver awareness courses don’t do one to one training, not sure what you mean by driving labour voters away, from labour ?, if anything, it’s driving voters away from the tories…
quite simply her job in government is way more important than the awareness course, are you saying that if the awareness course was at the same time as a cabinet meeting then she should skip the cabinet meeting?
That’s most probably what Captain Hindsight would require. Sod the country! You forget the important home security meetings and go and sit in on that speed awareness course instead
Surely intelligent people at the top of the government hierarchy have PAs who re-schedule meetings/appointments/holidays/sickness, etc for them on a regular basis.
An in-person course with others lasts 4 hours; an online “attendance” with others lasts about 2½ hours.
Of course, in an emergency, anyone anyone can be “pulled off” a course - it’s happened to me when my expertise was required.
I do not have any liking or support for Suella Braverman but this stuff about the Driving Awareness Course sounds like a non-story to me.
If Ms Braverman had tried to get away with not doing the course and not paying the fine, it would be a different matter.
As far as I can see, she enquired about whether she could do a the Driving Awareness Course in a one-to-one setting and was told No, she couldn’t, so ended up paying the Speeding Fine instead.
She may have been concerned about security risks if she was recognised or she may have been worried that someone would recognise her and tell the media about it. Either way, I don’t see it as a matter for an enquiry - she ended up being treated the same as everyone else - take the group course or pay the fine, so she ended up paying the fine. End of.
What is there to enquire into?
Someone’s expectation of privilege and the use of government services to facilitate that privilege.
Absolutely sod all!! It’s a nonstory that has been given storyline priority over and above actual important occurrences worldwide; it’s outrageous🤬
Dont get me wrong i think the points system needs looking at… i’m writing now as a drver of many years, and a motorcyclist before that, but i have never had a point on my lisence…yes yes i know i’m an angel… two years ago i got a speeding ticket, i was gutted, then i noticed it was from Nottingham, ‘erm’ i asked the lady who shares the car with me ‘when were you last in Nottingham?’… she thought for a moment ‘about three weeks ago [relief] I think this letter is for you’…
now in my opinion when you get banned from driving you should lose the licence and have to retake the test… now how many of us honestly think they would pass the test now?
I cannot speak for SB, but when I worked, I could not find a spare 2 hrs let alone 4 hrs for the full in-person course. Fitting in all my extensive owed annual leave was almost an impossibility or loose some of it, which I did. I lost many days owed to me.
You should have gone on a time-management course …
… oh, but you didn’t have the time …
Exactly. My PA fitted my time into my diary as much as practical, but some had to be delegated to my subordinates on my behalf. SB could not delegate her awareness course to her subordinates, therefore paid her £100 fine and collected the 3 licence points.