MPs claiming driving fines on expenses is “manifestly wrong”, the chair of Parliament’s sleaze watchdog has said.

Labour MP Chris Bryant said members of the public cannot claim fines on their daily expenses, adding that MPs should not “be any different”.

The senior party figure also said the ministerial code is “ripe for reform”, and the system is “not fit for purpose”,

Mr Bryant’s intervention came after The Independent revealed a Tory minister who served under Suella Braverman at the Home Office is among high-profile MPs to have wrongly claimed hundreds of pounds in driving fines on expenses

Amanda Solloway, who is now a minister in the energy department, claimed back an £80 fixed penalty notice issued to her while she was driving in London in July 2020, listing it under “MP travel expenses”.

Tory MP and select committee chair Simon Hoare, and former Tory vice-chair Bim Afolami, also got taxpayers to foot the bill for their penalties.

Mr Bryant told Sky’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday: “To my mind, it is manifestly wrong.  I don’t care whether it breaches the rules, it is manifestly wrong that somebody could.

“If you are an ordinary member of the public who has been caught parking in the wrong place at the wrong time and getting a parking ticket or a speeding fine, you can’t claim that on your daily expenses can you?  So, I don’t see why MPs should be any different.”

On the ministerial code, Mr Bryant said: “The ministerial code says in terms that no minister shall ever refuse to provide some information unless it is legally necessary to do so and so I think there is a danger here that if the Covid inquiry doesn’t get everything it needs in a timely fashion, then it will feel to the British people as if ministers are trying to obstruct a proper inquiry and that will be both a breach of the Ministerial Code and morally offensive.”

The penalties claimed for were issued by Transport for London, which hands out fines to drivers who violate traffic laws, such as parking on double red lines, driving in buhas lanes, and wrongly using disabled bays.

The IPSA register of MPs’ expenses shows that Mr Hoare, MP for North Dorset, claimed four times for £80 fines issued in November 2019.

Mr Afolami, MP for Hitchin and Harpenden, claimed for two £80 fines in December 2021.

Mr Doogan, SNP MP for Angus, claimed for a £160 fine in January 2022.

The expenses were approved and paid by the parliamentary expenses authority IPSA (the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority) – but after being approached by The Independent, it admitted it had been wrong to do so.

IPSA said it would be writing to the MPs to ask for the money to be repaid, and that it would also “reiterate” the expenses rules to them.

Ms Solloway and Mr Afolami claimed the expenses were submitted in error, and both confirmed they had repaid the charges after The Independent approached them this week. The other MPs did not respond.

Labour’s shadow Commons leader Thangam Debbonaire condemned the MPs’ claims, saying: “While Rishi Sunak’s MPs break the rules and try and make the taxpayer pick up the bill, working people are left struggling to cope with the soaring Tory cost of living crisis.

“Tory MPs flouting the rules damages public confidence in the system. Rishi Sunak must clamp down on the rulebreakers in his party and get on with delivering for the British people.”

Sir Alastair Graham, former chair of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, told The Independent that MPs should not be seen by the public as having special privileges.

“It’s scandalous. If the home secretary can pay her fine for speeding, then everybody else should pay their fixed penalty notices,” he said. “MPs are ordinary citizens like the rest of us, and if they’ve breached the regulations for driving then they have to pay the fixed penalty notice like the rest of us.

“It gives a very bad impression if they’re paid out of public funds, because it looks like they’re getting special privileges, which is most inappropriate.”

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