MP refuses to comment over £1,000 gift from bookmaker

By Nathan Joyes

Ian Paisley has declined to comment after news broke that the Member of UK Parliament had accepted a £1,000 ($1,300) gift from operator William Hill.

Paisley, having previously called the gambling industry “a plague on many families,” was issued with two Premier League football tickets alongside hospitality.

The Commons register reveals the gift from William Hill was received on 10 March.

Looking further into Paisley’s register for 2018, the MP also used £2,700 worth of travel and hospitality provided by the Northern Ireland Friends of Israel in May.

The registered address of Northern Ireland Friends of Israel is "Oasis Retail Services Ltd, Newtownabbey." Oasis is a supplier of gaming and betting machines.

In the same month the travel expenses were used, Paisley made a statement calling for there to be a “clampdown on gambling.”

When the MP was asked about why he accepted the gift and which match he attended, he replied: “I’ve really no comment to make.”

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