How honest were Francis Maude’s answers about the cost of Thatcher’s funeral?
It is almost a week since Margaret Thatcher’s funeral service, an event organised for the last 5 years by a committee heading ‘Operation True Blue’. The Cabinet Minister, Francis Maude, led the 25 strong committee, but last week he told Jonathan Dimbleby on BBC Radio 4’s ‘Any Questions’ programme that “it’s impossible to say at the moment”. It would seem he could not even estimate the final bill, despite declaring that he didn’t recognise the figures being bandied about after Thatcher’s death. How is it possible for Mr. Maude not to know an estimate of the cost of a funeral that he has been in charge of organising for 5 years?
His answer is more than implausible and I would urge the media and even individuals to challenge his statement by asking for clarification using the Freedom of Information Act. Was Francis Maude aware of the cost of the funeral, or a financial estimate for it, before Margaret Thatcher’s death? The electorate deserves an expedient and honest answer to this question.