PRIME Minister Cameron came under increasing pressure yesterday to follow the two top London police officers who have quit in the past two days, and go himself.
Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner John Yates resigned yesterday, following the departure of his boss, Commissioner Paul Stephenson, on Sunday.
Yates had checked the credentials of Neil Wallis before the Met employed the ex-News of the World executive, who was arrested last week over hacking allegations.
Wallis, a former NoW deputy editor, was arrested and released on bail on Thursday on suspicion of conspiring to intercept communications.
Yates’s resignation yesterday came after he was told he would be suspended pending an inquiry into his relationship with Wallis.
Rupert and James Murdoch are to appear before the House of Commons Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee at 2.30pm this afternoon, followed at 3.30pm by Rebekah Brooks.
This will follow the appearance of Stephenson and Yates before the Home Affairs Select Committee this morning.
The House of Commons is then being recalled tomorrow to debate the latest developments (MPs had been due to begin their six-week summer holidays today).
Tomorrow’s recall of parliament was announced by Cameron in South Africa, after one Tory MP had said it appeared he was ‘fleeing the country’.
Labour leader Ed Miliband said: ‘It is of great concern that the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police was unable to discuss vital issues with the Prime Minister because of his employment of Andy Coulson.
‘It is also striking that Sir Paul Stephenson has taken responsibility and resigned over the hiring of Mr Coulson’s deputy when the Prime Minister has not even apologised for the hiring of Mr Coulson.
‘We need leadership to get to the truth of what happened but the Prime Minister is hamstrung by the decisions he made and his refusal to face up to them.’
He went on: ‘And he must also now come to the House of Commons, as I think he’ll do on Wednesday, and answer the remaining questions about his relationship with Rebekah Brooks and James Murdoch and the dinner they had apparently 48 hours after Vince Cable was stripped of the responsibility of BSkyB and it was passed to Jeremy Hunt and he must now say, and he’s failed to do this, did they discuss BSkyB then or at any other time during the time that he became prime minister. Did he have discussions with Mr Hunt?
‘So I think the prime minister has a whole series of unanswered questions, but at the moment he is unable to provide the leadership that the country needs.’
The Serious Fraud Office said it will give ‘full consideration’ to a request by Labour MP Tom Watson to investigate out-of-court settlements made to hacking victims.
Don Foster, the Liberal Democrat media spokesman, has written to Ofcom urging them to look into whether Murdoch is ‘fit and proper’ to own a 39 per cent stake in BSkyB.