‘Bully’ Bercow costs us £645,000 a year and spends thousands on wining and dining guests on the taxpayer
- There have been calls for him to be denied peerage when he finally steps down
- He faces demands to quit after two former employees accused him of bullying
- Taxpayers footed the £109-a-month bill for Sky Sports subscription at his home
John Bercow cost taxpayers more than £645,000 last year as he spent tens of thousands of pounds on wining and dining in his grace-and-favour apartment.
The Commons Speaker’s lavish spending emerged as there were calls last night for him to be denied a peerage when he finally steps down.
Mr Bercow is facing demands to quit after two former members of his office staff accused him of bullying, which he has strenuously denied.
John Bercow (pictured with his wife Sally) cost taxpayers more than £645,000 last year as he spent tens of thousands of pounds on wining and dining in his grace-and-favour apartment
Meanwhile, accounts show Mr Bercow’s entertaining last year included throwing a dinner party to honour the boss of a controversial foreign aid scheme in Pakistan.
Taxpayers also footed the £109-a-month bill for the Sky Sports subscription in his official residence and £70 for photographs of Mr Bercow to send to his fans.
Invitations with the Speaker’s crest cost £342, branded letterheads £833 and envelopes nearly £600.
Mr Bercow earned £76,885 for being the Speaker, on top of his £76,011 MP’s salary – more than the £151,451 earned by Theresa May.
Accounts for Speaker’s House show it cost £484,568 to run his office and apartment last year. This included more than £25,000 on entertaining.
Last September, he spent £1,082 on a dinner for the Pakistani politician in charge of a project to dish out £420million of our aid budget.
Marvi Memon was given an award by Mr Bercow at the event in the State Rooms of Speaker’s House – even though it is taxpayers’ cash being given away in aid.
When her party was in opposition it claimed the cash handouts scheme, the Benazir Income Support Programme, was riddled with ‘nepotism and embezzlement’.
Other entertaining included a £1,540 drinks reception for new MPs.
Mr Bercow claimed £7,899 in travel expenses including £160 to fly to Scotland in August to be interviewed by Alex Salmond at the Edinburgh Fringe.
It has also emerged that Mr Bercow accepted sports tickets and hospitality worth more than £16,000 as gifts in the last year.
He particularly likes tennis and was treated by four clubs to seats valued at £10,699.
This included two seats in the royal box for the women’s semi-final at Wimbledon, worth £8,590.
While Bercow’s salary has risen repeatedly, expenditure has fallen since he took over as Speaker in 2009 – from £626,029 to £484,568.
A spokesman for his office said: ‘The Speaker is committed to cutting costs wherever possible.’
It came as Tory MP Andrew Bridgen called for Mr Bercow to be denied a peerage when he steps down.
Mrs May pledged earlier this year to end the convention of an ‘automatic entitlement’ to peerages for senior public servants as part of efforts to reduce the size of the House of Lords.
Mr Bridgen said: ‘What is perfectly clear is that this rule should apply to John Bercow.’
Mr Bercow is facing demands to quit after two former members of his office staff accused him of bullying, which he has strenuously denied
Former minister Rob Wilson added: ‘I believe the public is behind the PM’s view that automatic peerages are a thing of the past.
‘The Leader of the House should order an investigation of all the claims of bullying against John Bercow.’
One of Parliament’s most senior officials accused Mr Bercow on Thursday of ‘legendary’ rages.
Angus Sinclair, who said he was repeatedly undermined by Mr Bercow, finding himself the victim of angry outbursts, foul-mouthed tirades and mimicry
David Leakey, who retired last year after seven years as Black Rod, said that many people were ‘terrified’ of him.
MPs point out that before Mr Bercow was elected Speaker, he pledged in his manifesto to stay in the role for no longer than nine years.
That deadline comes up on June 22 – now 48 days away.
Mrs May made her pledge to abandon automatic peerages in February.
She said in a letter to the Speaker: ‘I will operate on the basis that there is no automatic entitlement to a peerage for any holder of high office in public life.’
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