Wednesday 21 March 2018

Conservative minister Ros Altmann sent vote for Labour leader election

Ros Altmann has responsibility for pensions
Ros Altmann has responsibility for pensions

A Conservative minister was sent a vote in the Labour leadership election - because she was a member of the party when she was made a peer and handed a government role by David Cameron.

Pensions expert Ros Altmann joined the House of Lords shortly after the general election to oversee the implementation of major reforms to the retirement system.

But The Huffington Post website revealed that the peer, who previously acted as an adviser to former Labour prime minister Tony Blair, was a member of the Opposition party for the first four months in the job.

Her membership - which she had held for 18 months and renewed in March, just weeks before the general election - was terminated by Labour when the anomaly came to light.

A spokeswoman for the minister said that she "has taken an interest in all three parties" because of her previous role as director of over-50s group Saga and as a "business champion" for older people under the Tory/LibDem coalition.

"She is now only a member of the Conservatives."

A Labour source questioned whether the Tories carried out "even basic checks" into their appointments.

But the Conservatives suggested it was Labour that should be red-faced for having invited one of its prominent figures to take part in the leadership election.

Press Association

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