Part of Opposition Day – in the House of Commons at 6:22 pm on 19th June 1995.

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Photo of Mr Brian Wilson Mr Brian Wilson , Cunninghame North 6:22 pm, 19th June 1995

We have heard Conservative Members put some pretty wafer-thin arguments this afternoon, but the previous speech excelled. It is astonishing at times such as this how limited, in the view of Tory Members of Parliament, is the role of non-executive directors. As for the Scott inquiry being the wrong way to conduct "our affairs", it might be the wrong way for Conservative Members to conduct their affairs—one can understand their reservations about the Scott inquiry—but Labour Members think that it is a very good way in which to conduct our affairs, the nation's affairs, to get at the truth about complex issues.

We also heard the hon. Member for Gainsborough and Horncastle (Mr. Leigh) put a remarkable defence that the affair was all beyond the reach, knowledge or control of Parliament because a Swiss company was involved initially. Of course it does not matter who owns the company; it is where the arms are manufactured that is critical for export licences. We have heard a very thin—