EASTBOURNE MP Caroline Ansell is in the firing line for voting with Tories not to suspend Owen Paterson on Wednesday night.

Now she has hit back: “I am very pleased the Government has reconsidered its position. I spoke to ministers on Wednesday to express my concern that reform of the system that investigates MPs’ conduct and the Owen Paterson case should not be linked together.

I also welcome Owen Paterson resigning. I think it is the right thing for him to do.

I voted in favour of the amendment on one principle and one alone – that everyone should have the right to appeal.

Under the rules we have now Owen Paterson did not have that right. I think this is unfair.

This very week I have taken up exactly this same cause for a local man, summarily dismissed from his position after years of dedicated service and all without the right to an appeal.  This case has caused huge personal upset for him and has had far reaching repercussions beyond his friends and family.

I was shocked by the decision and the ruling against him by what is a reputable organisation and I was then equally shocked that he had no right of appeal.

I have petitioned the organisation’s chief executive for an urgent meeting and flagged the case yesterday with a minister.  This is the type of work I do for those who need my help in Eastbourne and Willingdon.

I would also like to make a few things absolutely clear that some who want to play politics would like to mislead people about.

In no way did I vote to change standards or ‘free’ Owen Paterson of the allegations against him.

My vote did not exonerate Owen Paterson, it only delayed a ruling. I am firmly of the view that Owen Paterson had a case to answer.

I understand the public’s concern about what has happened and I will be replying to those who have contacted me.”