19 Jun 2009

Tony Blair claimed for new roof days before leaving office

9:47 pm on 19 June 2009

Former British prime minister Tony Blair claimed for the cost of a new roof on his second home just days before leaving Downing St.

Mr Blair's claim for $14,000 to cover repairs to the roof on his second home was submitted on 25 June 2007. Two days later he stood down as prime minister.

The revelation, reported by ABC News, came after the House of Commons published the full details of all MPs' expenses claims on the internet.

Would-be prime minister David Cameron, leader of the opposition Conservative Party, also admits to mistakenly claiming expenses, and says he will repay about $2400.

He'd already said he would pay back a $1700 maintenance bill, but he promises to repay the extra money after making further checks on his claims.

In a letter to parliamentary officials, Mr Cameron said he wished to make clear that the discrepancies were unearthed as a result of a review by his office, not by media enquiries.

The Tory leader has tried to take the initiative in a scandal affecting all parties about MPs claiming expenses for everything from dogfood to moat-cleaning.