This is not a time for partisan tinkering with our constitutional fabric - Khan

17 January 2012

Sadiq KhanSadiq Khan MP, Labour's Shadow Secretary of State for Justice and Constitutional Affairs, commenting on today’s announcement on the establishment of the Commission on the West Lothian Question, said:

“Labour believes the strength of the United Kingdom is drawn from representation from across Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and England. We are opposed to creating a simple hierarchy of members of Parliament based simply on what parts of the UK they represent – each MP has a duty not only to their own constituents but also to the UK as a whole.

“Labour has a strong track record on devolution. We believe that accountability and decision making can be improved in our local communities, city-regions and shires as part of an overall strategy for revitalising our democracy.

"Given the debate on an independence referendum in Scotland, a Commission on the West Lothian Question comes at a very challenging time and will require sensible handling. This is not a time for partisan tinkering with our constitutional fabric.

"However, it is worrying that on a matter of significant constitutional importance, the Tory-led Government has not sought any input from other political parties on the membership, terms of reference nor timetable of the Commission. We are also further concerned that on an issue of major political significance, no currently serving or former members of Parliament are involved in the Commission”