The United Kingdom whips’ office says it has opened an investigation into claims that a member of parliament (MP) watched pornography on his phone in the House of Commons chamber.
The MP, whose name wasn’t given, was reportedly caught watching the explicit content by two other lawmakers.
Harriet Harman, a Labour MP and the vice-chairman of the women in parliament all-party parliamentary group, was said to have described the action of the lawmaker as inappropriate.
“I don’t think anyone would think it’s appropriate in any place of work for people to be watching porn,” she was quoted as saying.
“The standards committee is reviewing the MPs’ code of conduct. It shouldn’t be necessary to say ‘you’re not to watch porn on phones in the House of Commons’ – phones which are probably paid for by the taxpayer – but it might be that it has to be added.”
A whips’ office spokesman was also said to have expressed concern over the lawmaker’s action.
“The Chief Whip is looking into this matter. This behaviour is wholly unacceptable and action will be taken,” the spokesman said.
According to the House of Commons code of conduct, “Members shall at all times conduct themselves in a manner which will tend to maintain and strengthen the public’s trust and confidence in the integrity of Parliament and never undertake any action which would bring the House of Commons, or its members generally, into disrepute.”
A meeting of the house standards committee held on Tuesday, and according to The Telegraph, if the allegation is found to be true, the MP could be charged for bringing the parliament into disrepute through his actions, thereby breaching the code of conduct.