|Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg MP|
Deputy Prime Minister and Liberal Democrat Leader, Nick Clegg has praised Cambridge MP Julian Huppert for the “superb job” he is doing scrutinising the controversial Draft Data Communications Bill.
When asked during the party conference in Brighton if he would veto the Bill if the Tories and Labour were in favour of it, Nick said he was no expert on it and would take advice from Julian.
Julian was selected by Nick to sit on the parliamentary committee which is overseeing the Bill. He is worried that the legislation in its current format, gives the government too much authority to monitor data, effectively snooping on its citizens.
Nick Clegg’s comments came when he was asked whether the Lib Dems would vote for the Bill.
He said: “Julian Huppert has been doing a superb job looking at the Bill.” And he added that, if the problems raised by the joint committee looking at it cannot be addressed then the Bill would not go ahead.
When asked if he would veto the Bill if Tory and Labour MPs on the committee supported it, Nick Clegg said he would take advice from Julian.
Julian said: “It's an honour and responsibility to be asked to play such a key role on this very serious issue.
“This Bill has huge implications for the way we access, collect and use data. We must not give ministers or anyone else broader powers to snoop on the public and we can only do that if we have tighter controls.
“I will be advising Nick Clegg that we cannot allow this to become a Bill or be presented to Parliament, unless these concerns are addressed, and the draft massively rewritten to protect out civil liberties."