PracticeAuditFilkin calls for closer audit of MPs expenses

Filkin calls for closer audit of MPs expenses

Former Commons sleazebuster Elizabeth Filkin wants Westminster to upgrade the audit and accountancy functions to keep a closer eye on MPs expenses.

The ex-parliamentary standards commissioner said the current system for auditing the claims – worth between £74,000 to £100,000 on top of MPs annual salaries – is too lax.

The claims cover staff and office costs, hospitality and travel and are largely authorised on the MPs word unless there are serious suspicions of malpractice.

Filkin said: ‘By any standards these usually involve substantial sums of public money, adding that there was currently ‘no rigorous audit of these claims, although guidance has been improved following investigations into misuse’.

‘I think that for anybody in a position of public trust, their claims should be very carefully audited to make sure that we, the public, are spending that money correctly. Of course MPs impose that sort of requirement on all sorts of other public office holders. I think it should apply to them.

‘I gather that, they are going to do a review of how MPs spend the money on staff and that will be a start, but there’s transport, there’s hospitality, there’s all the other claims that an MP can make, of course legitimately.

She added: ‘You’ve go to have proper audit and proper transparencies so that the public know that things are being done properly.’

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