Suspended MP Peter Bone returns to vote for Rwanda bill

An MP who was suspended from Parliament for six weeks returned to the House of Commons to vote in favour of the government’s Rwanda bill.

Wellingborough MP Peter Bone was barred after a report was released into bullying and sexual misconduct allegations, which he denied.

The Northamptonshire MP, who currently sits as an independent, was among a number of other former Conservative MPs who voted for the bill.

The government won by a majority of 44.

A recall petition is currently open in the Wellingborough seat, which could decide whether Mr Bone can keep his place as an MP.

Last night’s vote was on emergency legislation drawn up to revive the government’s plans to send some asylum seekers to Rwanda.

Some Conservative MPs on the right of the party threatened to vote against the bill, but the government won with a clear majority.

Other independent MPs who voted for the bill included former health secretary Matt Hancock, who was suspended by the Conservatives in 2022 after appearing on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!, and Bob Stewart, who surrendered the Tory whip after being convicted of a racially-aggravated public order offence.

Tellers at the dispatch box in the House of Commons

The government won the Safety of Rwanda bill vote with a majority of 44

An investigation in October by Parliament’s behaviour watchdog, the Independent Expert Panel, found Mr Bone broke sexual misconduct rules by indecently exposing himself to a staff member during an overseas trip.

It also upheld five allegations of bullying, including verbally belittling him, physically striking him and throwing things at him.

Mr Bone’s parliamentary ban expired last week.

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