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Ex-MPs who don't use Commons passes for a year will have them deactivated

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Ex-MPs who don’t use their Commons passes for a year will have them automatically deactivated in crackdown on lobbying

  • Tighter criteria will be introduced for which ex-MPs will need to qualify for a pass
  • More than 300 former MPs with a controversial ‘Category X’ access pass
  • Ex-Lib Dem leader Sir Nick Clegg recently handed back his pass despite having it while lobbying for Facebook 

Former MPs who do not use their Parliamentary passes for a year will have them automatically deactivated as part of a crackdown on access to Parliament for lobbyists.

Tighter criteria will also be introduced for which ex-MPs qualify for a pass – with only those who have served a minimum number of years allowed to have one.

There are more than 300 former MPs with a controversial ‘Category X’ pass, which allows them unfettered access long after they leave Parliament. All ex-MPs qualify for one.

Former MPs who do not use their Parliamentary passes for a year will have them automatically deactivated as part of a crackdown on access to Parliament for lobbyists

Former MPs who do not use their Parliamentary passes for a year will have them automatically deactivated as part of a crackdown on access to Parliament for lobbyists

Last week the Mail on Sunday revealed that ex-Lib Dem leader Sir Nick Clegg, who lost his seat in 2017, had finally handed back his pass, despite having it while lobbying for Facebook.

The former Deputy Prime Minister in the Coalition government pledged to return it after this newspaper first reported concerns about his access to Parliament.

Under the new rules, his pass would have been deactivated years ago. Sources close to Sir Nick, now president of global affairs at Facebook, said he had not used the pass.

Only MPs who have served about six years in Parliament will qualify for a pass, the MoS understands.

Last week the Mail on Sunday revealed that ex-Lib Dem leader Sir Nick Clegg, who lost his seat in 2017, had finally handed back his pass, despite having it while lobbying for Facebook

Last week the Mail on Sunday revealed that ex-Lib Dem leader Sir Nick Clegg, who lost his seat in 2017, had finally handed back his pass, despite having it while lobbying for Facebook

Last year, Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle asked Sir Charles Walker, the Tory chairman of the Commons administration committee, to review the situation because of concerns that former MPs working as lobbyists had access to Parliament.

Category X passholders are not required to register their financial interests.

The MoS understands that Sir Charles has presented his findings and Commons authorities are in the process of updating their rules.

The move comes after concerns that passes were being used by other people. In one extreme case, an ex-MP died and Parliament was not notified. Sources said they feared the pass fell into unknown hands. 

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