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Part of Opposition Day – in the House of Commons at 6:18 pm on 19th June 1995.

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Photo of Mr Allan Rogers Mr Allan Rogers , Rhondda 6:18 pm, 19th June 1995

Will the hon. Gentleman give way? Sir Jim Spicer: I am sorry, but I do not have time.

If I had been appointed a non-executive director in September 1988, I would not have known about the affair, because the contract was complete, with one shipment still to go. That one shipment went out through Oerlikon. That is a fact which can become public knowledge, and I hope that it will come before the inquiry when it is held.

The Opposition are asking for an outside independent inquiry. All the evidence of the Scott inquiry shows that such an inquiry would be precisely the wrong way in which to conduct our affairs and to achieve natural justice for those who appear before it, to which they are entitled. There can be no valid reason for any inquiry in which one person becomes the prosecutor, the judge and the jury. The result is muddle and delay. As my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade made quite clear in his speech, there would be delay on a massive scale, which is exactly what the Opposition have said today that they do not want.

Let us have faith in ourselves, conduct our own investigation through the Select Committee on Trade and Industry, and, in the light of its report, decide what we should do.