Posted: Tue 2nd Nov 2021

North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner calls for Flintshire MP Rob Roberts to resign

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Nov 2nd, 2021


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North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner has called for Flintshire MP Rob Roberts to resign saying “he is not fit to hold public office.”

PCC Andy Dunbobbin spoke out after the Delyn MP was given his Conservative membership back after serving a 12-week suspension.

He was stripped of the Conservative Party whip after an independent panel found he had sexually harassed a member of his staff.

According to the former member of staff, Mr Roberts had repeatedly propositioned him.

As a result, the staff member was left feeling “shocked” and “horrified”.

Mr Roberts insisted his actions were “romantic” rather than sexual but has apologised for his “completely improper” behaviour.

Mr Dunbobbin said: “It is shameful and shocking that Rob Roberts has not had the decency to resign because he clearly is not fit to hold public office after admitting such improper behaviour.

“We should be able to expect MPs and other people in public office to uphold the highest standards and if, as in this case, they clearly breach those standards then surely they should forfeit the right to represent their constituents who frankly deserve so much better.”

Mr Roberts, who was elected in 2019, has ignored repeated calls for him to stand down since his behaviour came to light.

Back in May MPs approved a motion to suspend Mr Roberts from attending the House of Commons for six weeks which was in line with the recommendation of the independent panel.

The Conservative Party then decided to double the length of the suspension to 12 weeks.

Because he was suspended by an independent panel rather than a parliamentary committee it meant he was not subject to a recall position which could have triggered a byelection in Delyn.

MPs voted last month to change the rules so members who are suspended for offences such as sexual harassment  or bullying can now face a recall position.

But the House of Commons voted against a Labour proposal to apply the rules retrospectively.

Even though he no longer has the Conservative whip, that has enabled Mr Roberts to continue sitting as an independent MP.

Many senior MPs, including Leader of the Commons Jacob Rees-Mogg, have previously urged Mr Roberts to resign.

Mr Dunbobbin: “It is wholly unacceptable that Mr Roberts should be able to exploit this legal loophole and remain in the House and continue to be paid by the public purse.

“I am also surprised that the Conservative Party are, as far as I am aware, allowing Mr Roberts to share an office in Mold with their North Wales MS, Mark Isherwood.

“I would like to the Conservatives to confirm whether this is the care or not.

“I the meantime, many people in Delyn – including my friends and family – are horrified that they are currently being represented by Roberts.

“He should go and go now, rather than trying to cling on and lingering like a bad smell.”

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