Margaret Ferrier's conduct was 'disgraceful and reckless' says Speaker of the House of Commons
Margaret Ferrier’s conduct while she was awaiting the results of her Covid-19 test and after she tested positive was “absolutely ridiculous”, the speaker of the House of Commons has said.
Sir Lindsay Hoyle’s comments come the day after Ms Ferrier, who had the SNP whip withdrawn after travelling while awaiting the results of a Covid-19 test, voted in parliament by proxy, indicating she has no plans to step down as an MP.
Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP’s Westminster leadership have called on the now independent MP for Rutherglen and Hamilton West to quit the House of Commons.
Sir Lindsay, speaking on Times Radio, said Ms Ferrier put everyone in Westminster at risk and that it was “bad behaviour”.
He said: “What she did was absolutely ridiculous. It was extraordinary to put everybody at risk when she travelled.
“But also she came into this building, putting others at risk. And that’s not acceptable. That’s bad behaviour.
“That was the mistake – that was absolutely disgraceful and reckless to all of us. And that’s the kind of thing I don’t want to happen.
“And I’ve got to say, we’ve not, as far as I’m aware, and I check all the tags, we’ve not seen that repeated, the one thing we have is probably the best Track and Trace in the country in Parliament.”
He also warned that MPs could become coronavirus “superspreaders” and they should not “put themselves at risk” as he urged parliamentarians to look after themselves to ensure they are “here for the long-term”.
Sir Lindsay also suggested he supports moving to virtual proceedings.
He added: “What we have got to watch out, (is that) MPs could easily become superspreaders because they come from all parts of the country…
“Whatever happens, people’s lives matter most, their health comes first and people with certain medical conditions, people of a certain age – I’m saying you’ve got to look after yourself.”
Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard said it was a “disgrace” that Ms Ferrier voted on legislation.
He said: “Margaret Ferrier has given a two finger sign to her constituents and the wider population with this latest act of hypocrisy.
“She is not fit to vote on legislation that impacts on us all. She must resign as an MP now.”
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