HC Deb 12 March 1999 vol 327 c423W
Mr. Maclean

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if(a) he, (b) civil servants in his Department or (c) special advisers in his Department have (i) had sight of drafts of select committee reports, in whole or in part, or (ii) been informed of conclusions of select committee reports prior to their publication by the select committees. [75875]

Mr. George Robertson

[holding answer 10 March 1999]: I refer the right hon. Member to the answer given by the Prime Minister to the hon. Member for Spelthorne (Mr. Wilshire) on 1 March 1999, Official Report, column 531. There have been no instances of members of Select Committees giving me or my Ministerial colleagues drafts of Select Committee reports, or parts of reports including their conclusions, before publication. Nor to the best of my knowledge have there been any occasions on which members of the Select Committee have given such material to civil servants or special advisers in my Department. This excludes embargoed copies of reports issued under House of Commons Standing Orders.