HC Deb 02 March 1987 vol 111 cc581-2
21. Mr. Nellist

asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster how many hours in February he spent on his ministerial duties.

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (Mr. Norman Tebbit)

Sixty hours, Sir.

Mr. Nellist

Has the Chancellor considered a slightly less arduous job which would give him more time for moonlighting, despite the fact he receives more than £50 per hour wearing his present hat? Has he considered today's report from the Labour research department which suggests that perhaps the real reason why he and the Government take little action against the pimps and sharks in the City of London is that, in his other hat, as chairman of the Tory party, he gets a quarter of the company donations from that source?

Mr. Speaker

Order. The hon. Gentleman must relate his questions to the Chancellor's responsibilities for the Duchy of Lancaster.

Mr. Tebbit

Once again, the hon. Gentleman is clearly labouring under one of the many misapprehensions that he probably shares with a number of his colleagues. My ministerial pay is £2,000 per year, which works at to rather less than £3 per hour. As ever, the hon. Gentleman has leapt from a wrong premise to an unfounded conclusion.

As to the City of London, if the hon. Gentleman can cast his memory back that far he may recollect that I was the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry who introduced the White Paper which brought about much tougher sanctions in the City and much tighter regulatory procedures which will soon be in force generally. Some parts are already in force. That is why we are having success in prosecuting for insider trading, which was not an offence under the Government which the hon. Gentleman would have supported had he been in the House.

Mr. Favell

My right hon. Friend will be aware that on 1 April the boundary commissioners start their work on the boundaries between metropolitan borough councils. When his official duties next take him to Manchester, will he tell the leader of Manchester city council that the people of Stockport are appalled at what is happening to that once proud city and do not want Manchester city council to encroach one inch into Stockport? With his usual delicacy of phrase, will he tell the leader of Manchester city council to turn his attentions elsewhere?

Mr. Tebbit

I am not sure whether it is the duty of the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster to get into such questions. However, I would always make it plain that the people of Stockport and, indeed, most of the people of Lancashire resent sharply the gross excesses perpetrated by Manchester city council. Indeed, I understand that the Leader of the Opposition also resents those excesses.