Bercow battles calls to resign amid bullying row

By Aubrey Allegretti, Political Reporter
John Bercow has issued a fresh denial in response to claims of bullying, saying he had no knowledge of a former staffer’s reported ?80,000 pay-off.
The House of Commons Speaker is fighting for his political career over allegations that surfaced on Monday night.
Mr Bercow's former private secretary, Angus Sinclair, told BBC Newsnight that the Speaker undermined him by mimicking him, shouting and swearing - and once smashed a mobile phone on a desk in front of him.He claimed to have been given "compulsory early retirement" in 2010 and an €86,250 pay-off to sign a non-disclosure agreement.The Speaker was prone to "over-the-top anger", Mr Sinclair claimed, adding: "I'm not sure he was completely in control of it. The arms would wave around."Mr Bercow's office said: "Mr. Speaker strongly denies there is any substance to any of these accusations."Mr. Speaker has a super team of dedicated, effective and long-serving staff - five of whom have worked for him very happily for a combined total of over 40 years."Later in the Commons, Mr Bercow said non-disclousure agreements were something "I am not myself involved and never have been."But Tory MP Andrew Bridgen said the new allegations were "compelling".
Bercow battles calls to resign amid bullying row

Mr Bridgen said: 'It’s best he jumps before he’s pushed'
He told Sky News: "I think this piles the pressure on John Bercow, at a time when we need a culture change in regard to bullying and harassment in Parliament.
"He’s done his nine years, I think he should consider his position and he should go."Asked if Mr Bridgen thought the Speaker would quit, he said: "I think he will go. If any more evidence comes forward, he’ll be forced out."If we have an inquiry into this, Mr Bercow could end up in a situation where he could not be going to the House of Lords."It’s best he jumps before he’s pushed."An independent judge-led inquiry is investigating the Parliament bullying scandal.Mr Bercow is already facing separate bullying allegations from Mr Sinclair's successor, Kate Emms. He has denied all the claims.
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Labour MP Barry Sheerman defended Mr Bercow, saying he had been the "best reforming Speaker for 100 years".He added that a "small group" of parliamentary officials "hated" his modernising efforts.
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