David Steel’s suspension over Cyril Smith comments lifted by Lib Dems
The Liberal Democrats have lifted the suspension of former leader David Steel, it has been reported.
Lord Steel had t he whip removed over comments he made to a child abuse inquiry about the late MP Cyril Smith.
Speaking to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse in March, Lord Steel said he asked Smith in 1979 about claims he abused boys at a Rochdale hostel in the 1960s.
He said he came away from the conversation “assuming” that Smith had committed the offences.
However, he said he took no further action because “it was before he was an MP, before he was even a member of my party. It had nothing to do with me”.
Lord Steel’s membership was subsequently suspended and the whip removed pending an investigation.
It has been reported that the whip had now been restored while the party recast the procedure being followed in its investigation into the comments.
Lord Steel, a former presiding officer of the Scottish Parliament, was pictured sitting with Lib Dem peers i n t he Lords on Wednesday.
A spokeswoman for the Scottish Lib Dems said: “There is a process ongoing and we won’t be commenting until it has concluded.”