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Political accord over after pension clash

Pensions minister Angela Eagle believes that the political consensus on pension reform has come to an end after a heated exchange in Parliament with the Conservatives this week.

In Parliament on Monday, Tory Shadow Culture Secretary Ed Vaizey said the Government is effectively setting up “the greatest pension misselling scandal of the 21st century” because of the issue of means-testing and criticised the Government over the delay to personal accounts.

Eagle replied that Vaizey’s comments seemed to indicate that the consensus was over and asked him whether this was the case.

Tory Shadow pensions minister Nigel Waterson responded to Eagle by saying: “Perhaps the minister remembers that Turner said that the scheme should start in 2010. Does she accept that it would be sensible for any new Government to hold a review of personal accounts, especially in the light of the four-year delay in implementation that she recently announced?”

In response, Eagle said: “It seems to me, then, that the consensus is ending.”

She said it would be “folly” to implement the scheme too quickly and cause it to collapse.

Eagle said: “There is no delay. There is just good implementation that will not put at risk the architecture that we have to create from scratch.”

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