Jeremy Hunt told off for 'fiddling ostentatiously' with phone during debate on cutting nurses' bursaries

Health Secretary called 'discourteous' by Speaker for using electronic device

Gabriel Samuels
Wednesday 04 May 2016 15:37
Comments
Hunt and other Tories told off by Speaker for 'fiddling' on their phones

Jeremy Hunt and other Conservative front benchers have been scolded by the Speaker of the House of Commons for "fiddling" with their mobile phones during a debate in Parliament.

John Bercow said the behaviour was "rank discourteous" when he caught the Health Secretary and his colleagues looking at their gadgets at the beginning of a discussion over NHS bursaries.

Mr Bercow said: "I do very gently say that to sit on the bench... fiddling ostentatiously with an electronic device defies the established convention of the house that such devices should be used without impairing parliamentary decorum. They are impairing parliamentary decorum.

"It's a point so blindingly obvious that only an extraordinarily clever and sophisticated person could fail to grasp it.

When the Deputy Leader of the House Therese Coffey appeared to continue pressing buttons on her phone, Mr Bercow shouted: "Put the device away, and if you don't want to put it away, get out of the house. I'm telling her its discourteous to continue, a point most people would understand."

Parliamentary legislature from 2007 states that: "Hand-held electronic devices (not laptops) may be used in the Chamber, provided that they are silent, and used in a way that does not impair decorum."

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in