Press release

Number 10 Press Briefing - Afternoon From 11 October 2011

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

From the Prime Minister's spokesperson on: the Finucane meeting, Defence Secretary Liam Fox, health and Gus O'Donnell.

Finucane meeting

Asked what the Prime Minister had said to the Finucane family during their meeting at No.10, the Prime Minister’s Spokesman (PMS) said he had expressed his profound sympathy with the family and had accepted the conclusions of Stevens and Cory that state collusion had taken place in Mr Finucane’s murder.

He added that the Prime Minister had accepted these conclusions on behalf of the Government and had apologised to the family.

Defence Secretary Liam Fox

Asked about the process of the investigation into allegations that Defence Secretary Liam Fox had broken the Ministerial Code, the PMS said he was unable to provide a running commentary on the process and that the Cabinet Secretary was addressing the remaining questions.

Health

Asked if proposals by Lord Owen to put the NHS Reform Bill into a Select Committee would be regarded as a sensible way of scrutinising it, the PMS said that the Government had carried out a listening exercise and as a result, some changes had been made which strengthened the proposals for NHS reform. Our intention was now to get on and implement them.

Gus O’Donnell

Asked several questions about Sir Gus O’Donnell’s retirement plans and his pension in light of the pension reforms, the PMS said Sir Gus had worked in the Civil Service for 32 years and that within the pension reforms we had proposed, accrued rights are preserved.