New Minister Says UK Has One of Cleanest Political Systems; POLITICS
British politicians must address how party donations are registered because failing to follow the rules can "damage" public perception of them, the new Culture Secretary said yesterday.
On his first day in the post, Andy Burnham said MPs had to follow the rules or face the consequences.
But he stressed that Britain had "one of the cleanest political systems in the world," and that problems with party funding were not restricted to Labour.
Mr Burnham was made Culture Secretary yesterday as part of the reshuffle that followed Peter Hain's resignation as Work and Pensions Secretary after police launched an investigation into donations to his deputy leadership campaign.
The new Culture Secretary said: "Of course it has been a very difficult time, not least for Peter himself.
"The facts are that we have to play by the rules and where that doesn't happen obviously consequences will follow. "I actually feel very strongly that Britain has one of the cleanest political systems in the world, but I am conscious that when things like this happen it can damage public perception of politicians.
"I think it's not just the Labour Party. All parties have had difficulties around the rules on the registration of donations.
"I actually think it's something that politicians generally have to address because it's important to the standing of politics in this country. …