Second Jobs Give MPs 'Real World Experience', Says Cabinet Minister

“It’s good that it’s not all just about politics," Sajid Javid said.
Former attorney general Geoffrey Cox is facing fresh questions today.
Former attorney general Geoffrey Cox is facing fresh questions today.
TOLGA AKMEN via Getty Images

A cabinet minister has defended MPs having second jobs, saying it gives them “real world experience”.

Sajid Javid said it was “good” that MPs were not just involved in politics after the practice of second jobs was called into question amid the ongoing sleaze scandal.

It comes as Tory grandee Sir Geoffrey Cox faced fresh questions today for allegedly using his parliamentary office to defend the British Virgin Islands in a corruption case brought by the UK.

The row exploded after the Owen Paterson lobbying saga which last week resulted in an extraordinary government u-turn and him quitting as an MP.

The extra money MPs make on the side is now under increased scrutiny, with more than 200 MPs receiving earnings in the last year on top of their £81,932 annual salary.

Among the top earners is health secretary Sajid Javid who raked in £366,000 during a brief spell on the back benches.

He was forced to defend his own external interests this morning, after working for JP Morgan when he was not in the cabinet.

Asked how the work benefited his constituents in Bromsgrove, he said: “I think it benefits...I don’t really want to just talk about myself but as a general thing for members of parliament to be able to have external interests. And again, as I said, they have to be transparent about it.

“It’s good that it’s not all just about politics that they [MPs] have real world experience, whether it’s business experience, whether it’s working in the NHS as some members of parliament do.”

Javid said his own interests had taken up one to two days a month, adding: “I was very open and transparent about is right that MPs, as long as they are following all the rules, can have external interests.”

Earlier this week The Sun revealed the 12 highest earning MPs have made more than £3.5million in outside earnings in just two years.

Among them was Theresa May who has made £760,000 from after-dinner speeches since quitting No10.


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