§ Mr. Hoyle
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer under what guidelines the Treasury press office responds to inquiries about personal matters concerning Ministers; how many such inquiries were received by the Treasury press office on 13 April 1991; what action was taken; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Nelson
The Treasury press office responds to inquiries about personal matters concerning Ministers by seeking guidance from the Ministers in question, and then taking follow-up action as appropriate. A large number of such inquiries were received on 13 April 1991. As my right hon. Friend the Chancellor has already explained, the nature of the allegations made on that evening made it necessary for him to issue an immediate press statement, based on legal advice, and for related inquiries to be handled by the solicitors.