Independent body to adjudicate on compliance with the Ministerial Code

An external, non party political body (for example, the Committee on Standards in Public Life) should be made responsible for determining whether a Minister's behaviour has breached the Ministerial Code.

22,293 Signatures

Status
Open
Opened
Wednesday 2nd December 2020
Last 24 hours signatures
5
Signature Deadline
Wednesday 2nd June 2021
Estimated Final Signatures: 22,293

This content was generated for your convenience by Parallel Parliament and does not form part of the official record.
Recent Documents related to Independent body to adjudicate on compliance with the Ministerial Code

1. Independent body to adjudicate on compliance with the Ministerial Code
22/11/2020 - Petitions

Found: An external, non party political body (for example, the Committee on Standards in Public Life) should

2. Public standards in England: 25 years since the creation of CSPL
24/02/2020 - Committee on Standards in Public Life (CSPL)
- View source

Found: 1 British Standards Landscape : A mapping exercise This report provides an overview

3. Standards Matter 2: Responses to the Public Consultation
24/03/2021 - Committee on Standards in Public Life (CSPL)
- View source

Found: COMMITTEE ON STANDARDS IN PUBLIC LIFE STANDARDS MATTER 2 SUBMISSIONS TO THE PUBLIC CONSULTATION

4. Standards Matter 2: The Committee's Findings
14/06/2021 - Committee on Standards in Public Life (CSPL)
- View source

Found: Leadership COMMITTEE ON STANDARDS IN PUBLIC LIFE STANDARDS MATTER 2 - COMMITTEE FINDINGS

5. Evidence from the Minister of State for the Constitution and Devolution
26/04/2021 - Committee on Standards in Public Life (CSPL)
- View source

Found: 1 Standards Matter Review response The overall architecture of the UK ethics system 1.

Latest Documents
Recent Speeches related to Independent body to adjudicate on compliance with the Ministerial Code

1. Independent Expert Panel
25/11/2020 - Commons Chamber

1: House of Commons Commission, Members of the Independent Expert Panel: Nomination of Candidates, HC 998 - Speech Link
2: (Appointment of Independent Expert Panel Members), the following be appointed as members of the Independent Expert - Speech Link

2. Ministerial Code/Register of Ministers’ Interests
18/05/2021 - Commons Chamber

1: will make a statement on enforcement of the ministerial code and the publication of the register of Ministers’ - Speech Link
2: to Her Majesty the Queen, to the position of independent adviser on Ministers’ interests. In taking up - Speech Link
3: democracy. Who do our Government answer to: the public, or private interests? We learned only from the - Speech Link

3. Bullying and Harassment: Cox Report
16/10/2018 - Commons Chamber

1: of a body that is both entirely independent of and external to Parliament to hear and adjudicate on all - Speech Link
2: process. However, as Dame Laura points out and as I made clear in my statement in July, culture change will - Speech Link

4. Ministerial Code
12/03/2020 - Lords Chamber

1: real problem with the Ministerial Code. The central question must be: is the code no longer fit for purpose - Speech Link

5. Lobbying of Government Committee
14/04/2021 - Commons Chamber

1: Lobbying of Government Committee(1) There shall be a select committee, called the Investigation - Speech Link

Latest Speeches
Recent Questions related to Independent body to adjudicate on compliance with the Ministerial Code
1. Committee on Standards in Public Life
asked by: Christopher Chope
20/05/2019
... what response the Prime Minister has given to the Report of the Committee on Standards in Public Life submitted to her on 3 July 2018; and if he will make a statement.

2. Committee on Standards in Public Life
asked by: Jon Trickett
07/09/2017
... who was present at the roundtable of public service providers hosted by the Committee on Standards in Public Life on 20 March 2017; what was discussed at that meeting; and what work arose as a result of that meeting.

3. Committee on Standards in Public Life
asked by: Jon Trickett
07/09/2017
... what was discussed at the meeting between Serco and the Committee for Standards in Public Life in their meeting on 2 March 2017; and what work of that committee has arisen from that meeting.

4. Committee on Standards in Public Life
asked by: Jon Trickett
07/09/2017
... what was discussed at the meeting between G4S and the Committee for Standards in Public Life in their meeting on 15 March 2017; and what work of that committee has arisen from that meeting.

5. Committee on Standards in Public Life
asked by: Jon Trickett
07/09/2017
... what was discussed at the meeting between Capital and the Committee for Standards in Public Life in their meeting on 11 April 2017; and what work of that committee has arisen from that meeting.

Latest Questions

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Currently, the Prime Minister is responsible for deciding whether a Minister's actions compy with the Ministerial Code. The PM is both judge and jury in relation to complaints and is entirely free to reject the advice of his independent advisor. The system is wide open to abuse, with decisions on breaches of the Code potentially being influenced by irrelevant party political considerations, such as whether a Minister is popular with backbenchers or party members.


Petition Signatures over time

Government Response

Existing measures provide appropriate independence in Ministerial Code investigations, recognising the Prime Minister’s constitutional role in advising the Sovereign on the organisation of Government.


The Prime Minister customarily updates and issues the Ministerial Code upon assuming or returning to office. This reflects the constitutional position that it is for the Prime Minister alone to advise the Sovereign on the appointment, dismissal and acceptance of resignation of other Ministers.

The Ministerial Code sets out the Prime Minister’s expectations as to the standards of behaviour for Ministers. As such, the Prime Minister is the ultimate judge of the standards of behaviour expected of a Minister and the appropriate consequences of a breach of those standards.

The Ministerial Code sets out a clear procedure for responding to an alleged breach of the Code. Where the Prime Minister, having consulted the Cabinet Secretary, feels that an allegation warrants investigation, he can ask the Cabinet Office to investigate the facts of the case and/or refer the matter to the Independent Adviser on Ministers’ Interests.

Any investigation would be undertaken either by civil servants in the Cabinet Office, who are under a legal obligation to operate in accordance with the Civil Service Code, including the values of honesty and objectivity; or by the Independent Adviser on Ministers’ Interests. This ensures an appropriate level of independence for the investigation and ensures that free and frank advice can be provided to the Prime Minister, whilst also recognising that Ministers only remain in office for so long as they retain the confidence of the Prime Minister.

For these reasons the Government considers that existing measures provide appropriate independence in Ministerial Code investigations, recognising the Prime Minister’s constitutional role in advising the Sovereign on the organisation of Government.

Cabinet Office

This is a revised response. The Petitions Committee requested a response which more directly addressed the request of the petition. You can find the original response towards the bottom of the petition page (https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/561476)


Constituency Data

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