The Minister announced that the government is currently developing sanctions for individuals involved in the death of Alexei Navalny, with updates provided as events unfolded.

On Monday night, Kemi Badenoch stated that he had documented a statement made by a high-ranking government official asking him to delay compensation payments for those affected by the Horizon scandal. A representative for Staunton confirmed that he had made a note of this statement, which he then emailed to himself and colleagues, making it easily traceable on the Post Office server. The representative also stated that Staunton was not aware of any accusations of bullying against him and that the Secretary of State did not bring up any such allegations during the conversation that ultimately led to Staunton’s dismissal. The representative also emphasized that this type of behavior would be completely out of character for Staunton.

  • A government official from the Foreign Office has rejected the idea of exchanging prisoners for Vladimir Kara-Murza, a Russian opposition figure who is currently imprisoned and holds British citizenship. Members of Parliament have expressed concern over Kara-Murza’s safety following the death of Alexei Navalny. Kara-Murza’s wife is determined to do everything possible to secure her husband’s release from Russia, according to Conservative MP Bob Seely. Seely has urged the government to consider exchanging imprisoned spies for Kara-Murza, who is now the most prominent Russian political prisoner. Seely, who is in communication with both the Kara-Murza and Navalny families, revealed that the Foreign Office has discouraged prisoner swaps, stating that it only encourages the taking of individuals as hostages by the state.

  • Keir Starmer faces the possibility of sparking a significant rebellion within his leadership if he attempts to prevent his MPs from voting on a motion for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza this Wednesday, according to backbenchers. Labour members are urging their leader not to use his authority to discourage them from voting in favor of a Scottish National party proposal for a ceasefire, following a previous vote three months ago in which 56 members defied the party’s position, including eight frontbenchers. While party whips have yet to determine their approach for the upcoming vote, several MPs have expressed concerns that it could lead to another divisive internal conflict if they attempt to oppose it.

  • Humza Yousaf has criticized the Labour party for emulating Margaret Thatcher’s policies by disregarding the welfare of oil and gas workers and leaving them jobless. He also stated that the Scottish National Party will not support the extension of the fossil fuel windfall tax. During a campaign speech in Aberdeen, Scotland’s first minister condemned Labour for jeopardizing 100,000 jobs, following Keir Starmer’s recent promise to implement a “proper” windfall tax on oil and gas companies. This decision came after the Labour party reduced their initial commitment of £28bn towards green investments.

  • The program that allowed Ukrainians to reunite with family members seeking asylum in the UK has been abruptly terminated. Politicians in opposition have criticized the move, calling it heartless and done without public knowledge, just days before the two-year mark of Russia’s complete invasion. While the Ukraine family scheme is being closed, government officials claim that a separate Homes for Ukraine program will still be available to assist individuals in need, as a means of streamlining the process.

  • Leaders in children’s services are urging for a comprehensive “plan for childhood” to improve the overall well-being and opportunities of a generation of young individuals who have been negatively impacted by the effects of austerity and the pandemic. In a critical evaluation of the government’s actions in recent years, they pointed out that child poverty has worsened, schools are deteriorating, and there is a growing health and well-being crisis among young people, particularly those from low-income families.

  • A member of the Labour party, Wes Streeting, has stated that Israel’s actions in attacking Gaza have exceeded what could be considered reasonable self-defense. As the party faces a potentially challenging vote in the Commons regarding the crisis this week, Streeting also expressed concern that Israel may have violated international law in its military operations, resulting in over 28,000 deaths in Gaza since the 7 October attack by Hamas.

  • The regulatory agency Ofcom is looking into potential violations of impartiality regulations by GB News during a program featuring Rishi Sunak answering questions from the public. The broadcast overseer stated that they received 500 grievances regarding the People’s Forum: The Prime Minister, which occurred in County Durham on February 12th of last week.

  • The United Kingdom’s main overseer of border and immigration matters has expressed concern over the potential vacancy of his position while the Rwanda program is implemented. Unlike previous inspectors, David Neal has been informed that he will not be reappointed for a second term. According to The Times, it is unlikely that a replacement will be chosen for at least six months, which coincides with the timeline of the prime minister’s plan to begin sending asylum seekers to Rwanda.

  • That concludes today’s UK politics live blog by Tom Ambrose. Thank you for following.

    To continue staying updated on the latest news from Westminster and beyond, click here.

    On Monday evening, Kemi Badenoch claimed to have documented a statement made by a high-ranking government employee, in which they requested a delay in providing compensation to those affected by the Horizon scandal.

    A representative from Staunton stated that he documented the information in a file note, which he sent via email to himself and coworkers. This can be traced on the Post Office server.

    The representative stated that Staunton was not informed of any accusations of bullying against him. They also clarified that the Secretary of State did not bring up these allegations at any point, including during the discussion that resulted in Mr. Staunton’s termination. The spokesperson also mentioned that such behavior would be completely unexpected from Mr. Staunton.

    The statement stated that it was beneficial for the business and fair for the postmasters to have a quicker resolution for exoneration and more generous compensation for those who were wrongly convicted. However, no significant progress was seen until after the Mr Bates programme. The reason for this delay will be left to others to determine.

    Kemi Badenoch caused the removal of Henry Staunton to occur.

    The representative for Ashfield addressed the House of Commons.

    I am shocked to see that the Labour Party is now showing support for the discredited leaders of the Post Office. These are the same leaders responsible for the unjust incarceration of postmasters throughout the nation, resulting in hundreds of convictions.

    Can (Badenoch) concur with my belief that in a difficult situation, those individuals over there would side with the con artists rather than the hard workers?

    Badenoch responded:

    According to him, this is one of the reasons why there have been wrongful convictions under the supervision of the Post Office leadership. We have made several changes, and this is the most recent one, to ensure that we have the appropriate leadership in position.

    However, it is evident that some of the members on the opposing side are handling this matter appropriately. Yet, based on the disruptive interruptions, it appears that many of them came here with the intention of scoring political points. I will not allow that to occur.

    Kemi Badenoch if she leaked information on the dismissal of Henry Staunton to the media prior to Staunton being himself informed.

    “May I clarify a detail about the dismissal of Staunton? From what I gather, he learned about it through Sky News. The Secretary of State mentioned that she had also contacted Sky News before informing him, in an attempt to prevent the news from being broadcasted. This suggests that she was aware of the leak from someone in her department.”

    What steps did she take to discover the identity of the person who leaked it? Is that person still employed? Otherwise, there could be concern that she herself leaked it.

    Badenoch mentioned, “I was expecting someone to ask that question.”

    I can provide proof that I specifically requested Sky News not to publish the story. I did not leak it, as that would have posed a legal risk if Staunton learned about it on the news before I had a chance to talk to him.

    “We are unsure of how Sky News discovered the information, as there are thousands of employees in the Department for Business and Trade, as well as many more at the Post Office and UKGI.”

    Bryant was being disruptive, but my main point is that leaks can cause significant harm and create legal liabilities for the department. I did not engage in such behavior; in fact, I actively tried to prevent any negative consequences for Mr. Staunton by reaching out to at least two media sources. It is disheartening to see his actions in the Sunday Times over the weekend.

    According to PA Media, the Falkland Islands will remain a part of the British family for the next 30 years, as demonstrated in a highly publicized event.

    Cameron stated that the sovereignty of the archipelago is not open to debate, despite recent requests from Argentina for discussions about the islands’ future. The islanders have expressed their desire to remain British.

    The Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs arrived at Mount Pleasant Airbase and will be touring significant locations from the 1982 Falklands War to honor the memory of those who perished in the conflict.

    The president of Argentina, Javier Milei, recently met with Cameron and has demanded that the South Atlantic islands be given to Buenos Aires.

    Before his trip to the UK overseas territory, Cameron stated that the Falkland Islands are an important member of the British family. He also made it clear that as long as the islanders wish to remain part of the family, the topic of sovereignty will not be open for debate.

    I am finished for today. Tom Ambrose will now be in charge.

    The ongoing debate over the SNP’s vote on Gaza persisted today, as Labour’s Scottish secretary Ian Murray stated on BBC Radio Scotland that no final decision has been made on whether his party will back the motion on Wednesday.

    The UK party is determined to prevent another revolt on this matter, as witnessed in November when a similar SNP vote resulted in the departure of eight leading members.

    Murray stated that the current motion had not been presented yet and suggested that the SNP should focus on convincing the government to back them.

    Murray emphasized that there was a very slim margin between the resolution passed by the Scottish Labour conference on Saturday, which called for an immediate ceasefire, and Starmer’s plea at the same conference on Sunday for the violence to come to an end.

    However, the SNP is still increasing the pressure on the Labour Party. Westminster leader Stephen Flynn is persistently inviting Labour leader Keir Starmer for a discussion about the vote, but he emphasizes that the goal of an immediate ceasefire cannot be weakened.

    During a session in the Commons, Labour MP Diana Johnson expressed her belief that the delay in compensating victims of the infected blood scandal also raises suspicions about the government’s handling of compensation for victims of the Post Office scandal.

    The accusations of procrastinating on distributing compensation to postmasters before the general election closely resemble the government’s actions in handling the infected blood scandal.

    In my observation, there appears to be a consistent pattern of behavior. The government only appears to take action when pressured or publicly criticized.

    Kemi Badenoch, the business secretary, replied in response:

    No, no and no.

    It is regrettable that [Johnson] would claim that the government only took action under pressure, despite our earlier submission of legislation to the House prior to the ITV drama.


    I must also notify the group that, during his time in office, a thorough inquiry was initiated to look into accusations made about Mr. Staunton’s behavior. This included grave issues such as harassment.

    My department was made aware of concerns regarding Mr. Staunton’s cooperation with the investigation.

    It is accurate that the British citizens were aware of the details surrounding this situation and the content of the phone conversation in which I terminated Mr. Staunton’s employment.

    I am placing a copy of the readout in both libraries of the house today so that both the honorable members and the public can view the truth. Any personal information regarding other employees of the post office mentioned in those minutes has been removed.

    According to Mr. Staunton, he was instructed by senior government officials to delay providing compensation when he became chair of the Post Office. However, there is no proof to support this claim.

    Upon assuming the role of Post Office chair, Mr. Staunton was sent a letter from Sarah Munby, the permanent secretary of the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), on December 9, 2022. The letter welcomed him to his new position and emphasized the importance of reaching settlements with victims of the Post Office scandal as a top priority.

    My department has made every effort to expedite compensation payments for victims, totaling £160m across all three schemes. This includes the implementation of a £600,000 fixed-sum award for those who were wrongly convicted, announced last fall. This undermines any claims that our actions were only prompted by the ITV drama.

    • She stated that all 2,417 post office operators who applied for compensation through the initial Horizon shortfall program have been offered compensation. She also mentioned that a total of approximately £1 billion has been allocated to provide restitution to affected post office operators.

    In summary, we are taking action and making sure that justice is served. It is unjust for the victims of this scandal to be subjected to further delays, as claimed by Mr. Staunton, when their lives and livelihoods have already been affected.

    It is unacceptable for Henry Staunton to make contrary claims, potentially for personal reasons, as it undermines trust in the efforts of government officials to provide fair compensation.

    I hope that the majority of those who read yesterday’s interview in the Sunday Times will recognize it for what it truly was: a clear effort to seek retribution after being fired.

    I deeply regret the way these events have transpired. We made every effort to handle Mr. Staunton’s dismissal with dignity, as well as for others involved. However, I will not hesitate to defend myself and my colleagues from these unfounded accusations, which they are unable to address directly.


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