Answer the questions properly, Mr Gove!

Janet Downs's picture
21 March 2011 House of Commons

“Andy Burnham (Leigh) (Lab): We found out last week that Education Ministers were the worst in Whitehall at answering parliamentary questions, with 496 questions unanswered”

Is Mr Burnham referring to ALL Education Ministers (past and present) or just the present one?

If the answer is the present one, then why is Mr Gove not answering questions? Is he just ignoring them? Or could it be that Mr Gove deflects questions by waffling about “problems left by the previous government” and so on. The Speaker got so annoyed at one point that he had to intervene:

Mr Speaker: Order. The Secretary of State has got to get used to providing much punchier replies.

Mr Gove’s other ploys include downplaying questions from Labour politicians by saying that their query was “beautifully scripted” and “beautifully read”. Unlike questions from the Tory ranks which are good points.

This is not good enough. Mr Gove has been Secretary of State for ten months. He has already imposed changes at an unprecedented rate, and he hasn’t finished yet. He seems to be inspired by a messianic vision. In which case, he should have the courage of his convictions, answer the questions properly and not resort to rhetoric.
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