Looks like the Labour Party is still trying to reverse the referendum result, says the Times
Labour has been accused of a secret plot to reverse Brexit after its deputy leader in Brussels deleted lines in parliamentary documents promising to “respect” the referendum result.
Richard Corbett, Labour’s second most senior MEP, tabled a string of amendments seeking to water down the importance of the country’s vote to leave the EU.
One changed a line that said the European Parliament “stresses that this wish [to leave the EU] must be respected” to simply that the body “notes” the referendum.
Ministers have at last realised that millions of pounds given to help the poor abroad are not getting to the right place, reports the Mail
The Government has dramatically halted new contracts with British foreign aid contractors after The Mail on Sunday exposed dirty tricks in the industry.
Taxpayer-funded deals worth millions of pounds have been frozen after Ministers ordered a wide-ranging probe into the ‘poverty barons’ profiting from the aid business.
A damning letter to contractors from International Development Secretary Priti Patel warns firms that a top-level investigation has been launched into: How taxpayers’ money is spent overseas; Payments and expenses taken by fat cats; Huge profits earned from Government contracts.
The blistering letter, leaked to The Mail on Sunday, also warns of a clampdown on dodgy deals between contractors and Whitehall officials, along with investigations into firms’ tax affairs.
The Independent reports that the Scots are still demanding to stay in the single market.
The Scottish government’s Brexit minister has said there is an “overriding obligation” on Theresa May to consider proposals to stay in the European single market.
The SNP’s Mike Russell made the comments in advance of publication of a Government document outlining how Scotland could remain in the single market without the rest of the UK.
It will also propose a “substantial transfer of new powers to Holyrood” after the country leaves the European Union (EU).
Mr Russell said: “People in Scotland voted to remain in the EU by an overwhelming 24-point margin.
The UK’s fishing industry is examined by the Independent.
Brexit could be good news for Britain’s fishing industry, but it will need continued access to European markets if it is to take full advantage of the opportunities posed.
A new report from the House of Lords EU Committee also warned that other EU nations could demand greater access for their ships to UK waters as part of a trade-off for market access.
66 per cent of UK fish exports go to the EU, meaning tariff-free or low-tariff trade must be preserved, the report said.
The UK fishing industry represents 0.5 per cent of UK GDP, and is of crucial importance to many coastal towns.
Brexit will mean the UK leaves the Common Fisheries Policy, and gains the right under international law to control who fishes within its waters.
The Star also carries the story.
The British fishing industry is being warned that major compromises will be needed after Brexit, including allowing foreign vessels to fish in UK waters.
A parliamentary report by the Lords EU Energy and the Environment Sub-Committee says Britain’s fishing industry will need continued access to European markets if it is to thrive after Brexit – which will mean offering the EU major concessions.
The report also warned that the interests of the fishing industry should not be sidelined in Brexit negotiations, even though it accounts for less than half of 1% of GDP.
The Italians are moving towards euroscepticism, reports the Express.
The eurosceptic Five Star Movement (M5S) edged ahead of the socialist Democratic Party (PD) in one of the latest surveys released since the former prime minister was forced to quit following his referendum defeat.
In a result which will send shockwaves through Brussels the anti-establishment party scored between 29 per cent and 31 per cent of the vote in three bombshell polls released today.
And the surveys also provide an indication of how fragile the PD’s support base is, with the majority of left-wing voters saying they would rather back a new party set up by Mr Renzi.
When combined with the projected vote share for the far-right Legia Nord (LN), which would become the country’s third biggest party, the two eurosceptic movements are expected to hoover up close to 45 per cent of the electorate at the next Italian election.
On top of that Forza Italia (FI), the centre-right party led by former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, has also taken an increasingly anti-EU tone this year which has seen its poll rating rebound to around 14 per cent.
Oath of allegiance
Several of the media report the suggestion by Sajid Javid that anyone in public office should have to swear an oath of allegiance to the values the British hold dear. Sky News says;
Every public office-holder may have to swear an oath of allegiance to British values, Communities Secretary Sajid Javid has indicated.
The pledge would be expected to cover elected officials, civil servants and council workers.
The proposal from Mr Javid is in response to a report on social cohesion by Dame Louise Casey, which warned some sections of society did not accept British values such as tolerance.
He said he was “drawn” to Dame Louise’s recommendation to bring in an oath of allegiance because it was impossible for people to play a “positive role” in public life unless they accepted basic values like democracy and equality.
BBC News reports:
Civil servants and other holders of public office should swear an oath to British values, Communities Secretary Sajid Javid has said.
Writing in the Sunday Times, Mr Javid said people could not play a “positive role” in public life unless they accepted basic values.
These included democracy, equality and freedom of speech, he said.
Mr Javid’s intervention comes after a report by Dame Louise Casey warned of increasing ethnic segregation.
Mr Javid’s proposals would mean every new recruit in the public sector, including councillors, school governors and civil servants would be expected to commit to the oath, which may have to be read out loud before starting the role.
This could extend to those working in the NHS and the BBC.
ITV News also runs the story.
Holders of public office may have to swear an oath of allegiance to British values, Communities Secretary Sajid Javid has suggested.
The pledge would be expected to cover elected officials, civil servants, and council workers.
Writing in The Sunday Times (£), Mr Javid said: “If we are going to challenge such attitudes, civic and political leaders have to lead by example.
“We can’t expect new arrivals to embrace British values if those of us who are already here don’t do so ourselves, and such an oath would go a long way to making that happen.”
Mr Javid’s proposal comes in response to a report on social cohesion by Dame Louise Casey, which warned some sections of society did not accept British values such as tolerance.
Several stories regarding the NHS have hit the papers today. The Guardian covers devolution of power.
The devolution of power to local authorities and mayors should not be used as an excuse by central government to wash its hands of responsibility of key services such as the NHS and social care, a cross-party committee of MPs has said.
The public accounts committee has also stipulated that the government must ensure taxpayers’ money is well spent by devolved administrations in England. It highlighted a continued failure of central government to define its objectives.
The committee added that the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) must do more to demonstrate the link between devolution and economic growth, as repeatedly trumpeted by the former chancellor George Osborne.
The Mirror reports on social care.
Tory ministers have finally coughed up cash to plug the social care crisis after desperate calls by charities, Labour and Tory MPs.
A new £240m grant for care homes will be dished out in 2017/18 “according to relative need”, it was announced today.
But the money will still be raided from council budgets – because it will come from a different scheme that is set to be cut.
Communities Secretary Sajid Javid said the entire grant will be made by reducing money paid to councils under the New Homes Bonus.
The scheme was set up in 2011 and encourages councils to build new homes by matching council tax payments on them for six years.
Now the money will only be paid if housing in an area increases by more than 0.4% a year – apparently to stop “normal growth” being caught up in the scheme.
The recent rail strikes are part of a concerted effort to bring down the government, claims the Times.
A militant union leader behind the rail strikes causing chaos for millions says unions are co-ordinating action to “bring down this bloody working-class-hating Tory government”.
Sean Hoyle, president of the RMT, declared that “rule No 1” for his union, whose members have held a string of strikes on the beleaguered Southern rail network, was to “strive to replace the capitalist system with a socialist order”, telling a meeting of hard-left activists last month, “if we all spit together we can drown the bastards”.
Details of his comments, made in a series of recent speeches, come as Britain faces a Christmas of transport chaos, with a wave of strikes this week and into the new year.
And the Independent claims a union leader is politically motivated.
The man vying for Len McCluskey’s job at the helm of Britain’s biggest trade union said the leader should not be Jeremy Corbyn’s “puppet master”.
Gerard Coyne criticised the Unite general secretary, who is seeking re-election, for meddling in Westminster politics.
Mr Coyne, currently Unite’s West Midlands regional secretary, told the Observer: “I just don’t think that ever again the general secretary should be the puppet master of the leader of the Labour Party.
“There is an opportunity for change, for a fresh start, for members to get their union back.”
ITV News has a similar story.
The fight to lead Britain’s biggest trade union has grown increasingly bitter, with current leader Len McCluskey accused by a rival of being Jeremy Corbyn’s “puppet master”.
Gerard Coyne, who is challenging Mr McCluskey in the union’s leadership elections, told The Observer that the Unite boss was meddling too much in Westminster politics at the expense of the union’s membership.
“I just don’t think that ever again the general secretary should be the puppet master of the leader of the Labour Party,” he said in an interview with the newspaper.
“There is an opportunity for change, for a fresh start, for members to get their union back.”
And the Guardian reports a call for change within the union.
Jeremy Corbyn’s most powerful union ally, Len McCluskey, has been bitterly attacked by the man seeking to end his six-year reign in charge of Britain’s biggest union, Unite.
In his first newspaper interview since announcing that he will challenge McCluskey in an election, with huge potential repercussions for Corbyn and for Labour, Gerard Coyne accuses the Unite general secretary of meddling too much in Westminster politics, and of neglecting the crucial issues facing working people.
“I just don’t think that ever again the general secretary should be the puppet master of the leader of the Labour party,” Coyne – Unite’s regional secretary in the West Midlands – told the Observer. “There is an opportunity for change, for a fresh start, for members to get their union back.”
The Morning Star quotes the current leader.
UNITE leader Len McCluskey vowed to continue exposing and holding to account “bad bosses” as he formally launched his re-election campaign yesterday.
Mr McCluskey is seeking another term in office, saying his members need someone who is experienced and “fearless” to tackle the continuing Tory onslaught on the working class over jobs, pay and conditions.
His current five-year term was due to end in 2018, but Mr McCluskey has brought forward the election by a year to next spring as the union faces one of the toughest fights in its history.
Mr McCluskey said that a key reason he is standing again is the support he has received from union members and officials across the country.
And Sky News reports the union boss saying his decision to bring the election forward has nothing to do with a potential General Election.
Len McCluskey has denied claims that he has brought forward his re-election bid to boost support for Jeremy Corbyn in the run-up to the 2020 general election.
In his first TV interview since quitting and triggering an election, the man dubbed “Red Len” told Sky News the claims were an attempt by “the Right wing of the Labour Party” to discredit him.
“It’s nothing to do with Jeremy Corbyn or the Labour Party,” Mr McCluskey said.
“It’s about the general secretary of Unite. What I’m standing for is on my record and my vision.
“Unite has been a progressive, powerful force for good since I’ve been general secretary.”
The Star can always be relied upon to bring us a doomsday prophesy and this time it’s a starquake.
KILLER cosmic rays from a powerful starquake are on course to cause a global Christmas catastrophe, according to conspiracy theorists.
Millions of lives will be at risk if wacky premonitions of a monstrous wave of radiation smashing into Earth on Boxing Day come true.
Doomsayers are convinced that a colossal explosion on the surface of a neutron star thousands of lightyears away poses a chilling threat to humanity.
Earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic eruptions are predicted to rip the world apart as the holiday season kicks off on December 24.
The flood of deadly gamma and X-rays are said to have been unleashed by an explosion on the surface of a magnetar.
Magnetars are incredibly dense stars with masses up to twice that of the sun and extremely powerful magnetic fields.