Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Another non-answer on Brown's gift shop

Some people might remember the posts I have done on the Downing Street Gift Shop. These all started because Francis Maude asked some questions and got stonewalled answers. I then sent through an FoI to get a product list which then meant Downing Street finally put the list of products in the Commons library.

Well, it seems the non-answers are back. On Monday, Francis Maude asked the Cabinet Office, pursuant to earlier responses, how many of the branded wallets they had sold from the Gift Shop. The response from Angela Smith was simply,
I have nothing further to add to the earlier answer.
OK, so a skip back to the previous questions shows they had nothing to do with his new question really and could not, as answers, in anyway, be said to be linked to his new question asking for a figure.

OK, so non-answers is the standard these days, but why do they persist in the smoke and mirrors about something as benign as a bloody gift shop? One can only assume that it is because they rarely sell anything and it's embarrassing to admit it.

Mind you, why would anyone want a Downing Street branded wallet? It would always be emptied or at best contain IOUs right? I think, when I get back to the UK, I may have to submit an FoI for the sales figures from the gift shop for each of the items.

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