Business of the House

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:31 pm on 13th February 1997.

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Photo of Mr Tony Newton Mr Tony Newton , Braintree 3:31 pm, 13th February 1997

My hon. Friend will be aware of the Government's increasingly successful efforts to counter the undoubted problem of social security benefit fraud. As for the main purpose of his question, I am aware that that controversy has continued for some time; it was going on when I was Secretary of State for Social Security. My hon. Friend talks about "only" £255 million a year, but he ought to acknowledge, as I hope that he will, that the Government need to think carefully about priorities, in view of the need to control the growth in social security spending as a whole.