Michael Fabricant is writing to the senior civil servant of each Government
Department asking to see the files being kept on him. These letters are
being copied to the Cabinet Secretary, Britain’s most senior civil servant.
"Most people were shocked to hear that civil servants have been instructed
to keep files on Opposition Members of Parliament – Conservative and
Liberal-Democrat. This follows on from the Government’s proposals to allow
various organisations to tap phone calls and read personal emails – a
massive and worrying breach of personal privacy and nothing to do with the
legitimate fight against terrorism and drugs. It is utterly wrong that any
Government should politicise the civil service and it rocks the principles
of democracy for MPs to have secret files kept on them by the Government
Party. This is more like the tactics of a banana republic in South America
and it is a disturbing new development in Labour control freakery", says
The letter written to all Government Departments reads:-
Under the terms of Section 7(1) of the Data Protection Act 1998, I would
grateful if you could provide me with copies of all the personal data that
your Department holds about myself, dating back to when the Labour
Government took office in May 1997.
For the avoidance of doubt, this request covers electronic and manual
records, including but not exclusively, email, internal and external memos,
faxes, correspondence and any accessible data that could be classified as
‘personal data’ under the Act.
To assist you in locating such information as per Section 7(3) of the Act,
the search should include any personal data relating to my conduct and
activities as a Member of Parliament, as a resident of Lichfield, as a
member of the Conservative Party and as a public figure in general. These
topics should not be construed as definitive – your Department may hold
personal data in many other areas. I hope you will be able to check your
records comprehensively for all instances of personal data.
In addition, I wish to request any instructions given to destroy any records
relating to my personal data during that time, either on a general or
specific basis. In any such case, I request that attempts be made to recover
such information, such as through electronic backups, as laid out in clause
20 of the Lord Chancellor’s Department Guidance on Handling Subject Access
Requests (April 2002).
Meanwhile, the Government proposes to pass The Regulation of Investigatory
Powers (Communications Data: Additional Public Authorities) Order 2002 this
week. It will enable the following additional organisations to tap
telephones and read emails:-
1. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. 2. The Department
of Health. 3. The Home Office. 4. The Department of Trade and Industry. 5.
The Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions. 6. The
Department for Work and Pensions. 7. The Department of Enterprise, Trade and
Investment for Northern Ireland.
8. Any local authority within the meaning of section 1 of the Local
Government Act 1999. 9. Any fire authority as defined in the Local
Government (Best Value) Performance Indicators Order 2000. 10. A council
constituted under section 2 of the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Act
1994. 11. A district council within the meaning of the Local Government Act
(Northern Ireland) 1972.
NHS bodies in Scotland and Northern Ireland
12. The Common Services Agency of the Scottish Health Service. 13. The
Northern Ireland Central Services Agency for the Health and Social Services.
Other bodies 14. The Environment Agency. 15. The Financial Services
Authority. 16. The Food Standards Agency. 17. The Health and Safety
Executive. 18. The Information Commissioner. 19. The Office of Fair Trading.
20. The Postal Services Commission. 21. The Scottish Drug Enforcement
Agency. 22. The Scottish Environment Protection Agency. 23. The United
Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority Constabulary. 24. A Universal Service
Provider within the meaning of the Postal Services Act 2000.