politics

Tory MP faces second probe into his behaviour after apology for "bullying" staff


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Daniel Kawczynski is under investigation by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards over “actions causing significant damage to the reputation of the House as a whole, or of its Members generally”

Conservative MP Daniel Kawczynski
Conservative MP Daniel Kawczynski

A Tory MP faces a second probe into his behaviour, after being ordered to apologise for “bullying” staff in Parliament.

A Parliament probe in June found Shrewsbury MP Daniel Kawczynski had acted in a “threatening and intimidating manner” towards workers after a tech glitch meant he was unable to join a committee hearing.

Now the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards has launched a fresh investigation.

Confirming the new probe on their website, they said Mr Kawczynski is accused of “actions causing significant damage to the reputation of the House as a whole, or of its Members generally.”

But they declined to give any specifics about the ongoing investigation.

It comes after an Independent Expert Panel (IEP) report published in June, found Mr Kawczynski had been “repeatedly aggressive, rude and impatient” in calls made to the private mobile phone of one of the complainants.

The report said he “used extreme, although not profane language” – saying “this is a scandal, an outrage, this cannot be happening”; “this is a farce”; “you are useless”.








Mr Kawczynski apologised in the Commons in June
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He threatened a formal complaint – and described the complainant as a member of the “snowflake generation”.

The incident occurred in April 2020, as Parliament was adapting to new remote working during the coronavirus lockdown.

Later that evening, the report says Mr Kawczynski made “phone calls…to the complainants’ manager while under the influence of alcohol” – which the Commissioner concluded was “grossly unprofessional and a significant breach of Parliament’s Behavioural Code.”

He now faces a second probe from the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards – who has the power to recommend MPs be suspended or face recall by-elections in the most serious cases.

Speaking to the Mirror in June, Mr Kawczynski said making the apology was “something I’m going to have to do” and he would use the “script he had been provided”.

He also admitted he had had “one large glass of wine” before making the phone call, but denied being drunk.





He said: “I would argue that I spoke to all the people involved in a professional way throughout the whole course of the day.

“Now, did I have one alcoholic beverage in my office in the afternoon because I was exasperated and exhausted by this process? Yes I did. But I did not have an excess of alcohol.

“I had one large glass of wine and that was it.

“And I certainly didn’t speak in any way which I could be perceived to have consumed an excess of alcohol.

“What I would say is I was certainly emotional at that time, and I certainly spoke very, very passionately and with conviction because I felt so badly let down.”

He insisted he had behaved “in a professional way” and been “measured” throughout.

“Strong? Yes. Critical? Yes. Forceful? Yes.

“But certainly measured, and undertaken in a professional way, with professional words and a professional tone of voice. That is the difference of opinion.”





He said: “I intend to apologise on the floor of the House, in the script that has been handed to me by the panel.”

He said the apology was “something I’m going to have to do.”

But he insisted this did not mean the apology was “with his fingers crossed behind my back”.

In his statement to the Commons, Mr Kawczynski said: “I did not swear nor raise my voice but my behaviour led to two complaints.

“I have reflected on my behaviour, I accept it constituted bullying and as such was highly inexcusable. The circumstances were stressful for the staff who were assisting the committee and for me.

“I’ve apologised to them before and I apologise to them again and to the house unreservedly. I will never repeat such behaviour.”





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