5th Jul, 2022

Coventry South MP Zarah Sultana clashes with deputy speaker after calling Tory ministers 'dodgy'

THE MP for Coventry South, Zarah Sultana, clashed with the Commons Deputy Speaker today when she refused to backtrack on calling Tory Ministers ‘dodgy’.

During a business statement by the Leader of the House, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Ms Sultana described the Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps and Rees-Mogg as ‘dodgy’, slamming the ‘corrupt’ Conservative government.

Deputy Speaker, Eleanor Laing, asked her to ‘moderate her language’ and requested four times she withdraw the word ‘dodgy’, but she refused.

She said: “I don’t think another word suffices [for] the levels of corruption and what we’re seeing from this government.

She later added she could not think of any other way to put it.

When Ms Sultana still refused, the Deputy Speaker raised her voice with the words ‘order, order!’ It stopped Ms Sultana in her attempt to justify her use of the word with the speaker asking he again to ‘moderate her language’.

Ms Sultana declined the offer and sat back down.

Ms Sultana had raised reports that the Transport Secretary had used public money to create a departmental team that lobbied against plans to build on airfield sites, including proposals for a gigafactory at Coventry Airport.

She said in the Commons: “Disgracefully, that would mean he used public funds to lobby against green investment and thousands of jobs coming to Coventry.”

She also called attention to Rees-Mogg who, she said, had ‘tried to rewrite the rules to let his mate off the hook’.

She claimed the Conservative Government was ‘rotten to the core’.

On Tuesday, Ms Sultana and Taiwo Owatemi, Labour MP for Coventry North West, wrote to the Prime Minister demanding ‘assurances that the government backs the gigafactory plans and that no more public funds will be used by the government to lobby against them’.

Speaking afterwards, Ms Sultana expressed her view that reports of the Transport Secretary lobbying to stop billions of pounds of green investment coming to Coventry could deprive the city of more than 6,000 skilled jobs.

“Coventry deserves so much better than this corrupt Conservative government.”

 

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