John Spellar: Our understanding is that the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, will come that conference. Will the Prime Minister raise this issue directly with him, and will the Foreign Secretary raise it with his counterpart from India?
John Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many people have been arrested, charged and convicted for non-compliance of not ensuring that their dog is microchipped.
John Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many (a) all-electric and (b) hybrid vehicles are operated by his Department and its agencies.
John Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when the last time was that each Minister in her Department met the Departments Chief Scientific Adviser.
John Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what the cost of installing smart meters in domestic properties has been to date; and what estimate his Department has made of savings to domestic consumers of that installation.
John Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate his Department has made of the cost per mile of installing WiFi and mobile phone connectivity on the West Coast Main Line.
John Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent representations he has made to the Government of India on the release of Jagtar Singh Johal.
John Spellar: The Prime Minister will be aware that the huge new Midland Metropolitan Hospital in Smethwick is currently halted by the Carillion collapse. However, it is already two thirds finished and the longer the restart of work is delayed, the more the ultimate costs will rise. Yet only this week, more project management staff were laid off, so will the Prime Minister commit to getting this site back...
John Spellar: Hard cases make bad law. It is absolutely clear that the previous Minister made an outrageous, dogma-driven choice in Toby Young and, as the current Minister has admitted, clearly failed to undertake due diligence. I urge that we should not allow that to lead to the abdication of responsibility for appointments to a self-perpetuating quangocracy that looks after the great and the good.
John Spellar: That is all well and good, and all long term. Given that, why are the Government not sorting out the Capita contract on recruitment, which is clearly, visibly, obviously and lamentably failing the country, our armed forces and the recruits?
John Spellar: Having all of those other worthy people involved does not get to grips with the problem of the here and now; it is pushing everything off to the right and over the horizon—again. Why will the Department not get a grip of just this programme and sort it out, because it is crippling to our armed forces?
John Spellar: Will the right hon. Gentleman give way?
John Spellar: It is clear from the figures provided by the Library that while in most years there was an actual increase in defence expenditure during the years of that Labour Government, since 2010 it has been -1.4%, -1.4%, -4%, -3.3%, -2.4% and -2.9%, and in 2016-17 it did actually go into the positive, +1.4%. My friend should be clear that there was a step-change when the Cameron Government came in that...
John Spellar: The hon. Gentleman rightly identifies the potential difficulties on the north European plain. Should not the Ministry of Defence therefore reconsider its decision to withdraw from north Germany and reinstate our capability there?
John Spellar: While protecting the rights of EU nationals who are already here, can the Minister reassure my constituents that, whatever the other details of the final Brexit agreement, it will include the end of free movement?
John Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when she plans to respond to the letter of 11 January 2018 from the right hon. Member for Warley regarding Mr Alex.
John Spellar: May I bring the Minister back to the core issue, which is that there are two separate but linked problems: the business model and the performance of these companies? Like Carillion, Capita seems to be part of the over-concentrated, over-leveraged, dividend-and-bonus-exploiting culture that relies on the state to bail out failure. Capita incompetence is only too clear from its lamentable...
John Spellar: If these matters are so pressing, urgent and obvious, why have we been having September sittings, which enormously disrupt any programme of work?
John Spellar: It is the same on the Opposition side.