26 September 2023

UNITED KINGDOM: Speeding issue drives Minister into trouble

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United Kingdom Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak is consulting his ethics adviser to discuss Home Secretary, Suella Braverman’s handling of a speeding offence.

Ms Braverman (pictured) is alleged to have asked Public Servants to help her avoid a speeding fine and penalty points on her driving license.

She sought a private, one-to-one driving awareness course to avoid an in-person course or an online one where her name and face would be visible to other participants.

Her requests were refused and Ms Braverman opted to pay a fine and take three demerit points on her license rather than take a public course.

Ms Braverman was caught speeding when she was Attorney General last year. She is under scrutiny, not over the speeding offence itself, but over whether she acted properly in trying to arrange a one-to-one awareness course.

Mr Sunak earlier declined to say whether he would be ordering an inquiry when asked about the story. He also declined to say he backed her — however, a source from his office later said: “of course he did.”

The Opposition Labour Party’s Spokesperson on Health, Wes Streeting said the Prime Minister was “too weak” to sack her or launch an inquiry.

A Government source said Ms Braverman had been concerned about her insurance premiums and favoured doing a course.

The source said when the course provider told her there was no option to do a private course, 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.

A Cabinet Office spokesman said: “It would not be appropriate to comment on the existence or content of advice between Government Departments.”

London, 25 May 2023

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