Shahid Malik cleared of wrong-doing...but Brown won't give us details

Never let it be said that Acid Rabbi is unfair. A b*stard, perhaps - we won't argue with that but not unfair. For that reason, we'll mention that Shahid Malik - the ex-Minister for Justice whose resignation we published a piece on in May - has been cleared of any wrong-doing related to the £100 a week rent he pays for his Dewsbury constituency flat. The expectation was that he would return to the Cabinet if he was cleared and if nobody else took over the position - he has since done so, having been named Communities Minister following Prime Minister Gordon Brown's reshuffle.

Shahid Malik MP: Cleared by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards.

If Mr. Malik was paying a subsidised rent, he would have had to declare it. No.10 asked Commissioner for Standards Sir Phillip Mawer to investigate the MP, who has always insisted he did not break ministerial rules and claims to be "delighted" at the result of the investigation.

Mr. Malik - we'd like to say sorry for our suspicion that you were up to no good, and we're very pleased that you've been proved not guilty. However, please tell Mr. Brown that we, the British electorate, would be a lot more comfortable with your reinstatement if the findings of Sir Mawer's investigation were made public. Mr. Brown says that the report "goes into quite a lot of detail about Mr Malik's personal affairs" but, when asked if a redacted (edited) version, with sensitive details removed, would be published, he again says no but does admit that Malik has since put his tenancy arrangements on what the Daily Telegraph calls "a more formal footing."

Now, Mr. Malik. We don't want to say we don't believe that you're innocent - partly because you've been on the news attacking the BNP since Sunday, and most of us don't trust those dodgy fascists one bit - and we have no doubts that Sir Mawer did his job to the utmost of his abilities. The trouble is, you see, not very many of us out here amongst the electorate trust Gordon any more - in fact, a lot of us think he's a back-stabbing pitiful excuse for a PM and had we have voted for him we'd now be sincerely regretting it. Also, we haven't forgotten the £66, 827 you claimed in expenses over the last three years. That's a lot of money, isn't it? Considering we're a little unimpressed with all those MPs who claimed far smaller amounts, I'm sure you can understand that we still have a few reservations - it's going to take a little bit of time until we can trust you fully again.

We really want to trust you again, though. Please ask Gordon to help us see that you are an honourable man by publishing the investigation - surely you can understand that doing so is in your own best interests?

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