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Page last updated at 13:37 GMT, Sunday, 28 September 2008 14:37 UK

Government to protect savers

Yvette Cooper, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, confirmed that the government is stepping in to protect savers with Bradford & Bingley.

Yvette Cooper, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury
We are very clear that depositors and ordinary savers must be properly protected
Yvette Cooper

"Certainly the government is stepping in, as part of the process and part of the discussions over the weekend, and that's the right thing for government to do under the circumstances.

"We are very clear that depositors and ordinary savers must be properly protected and they will be as part of the arrangements we'll set out."

Cick here to tell us what you think about the economic crisis

She confirmed that the Chancellor would make a full statement before the markets open tomorrow, but said that negotiations were still underway.

Tory attack

She also launched a scathing attack on the Conservatives, calling their plans "completely incoherent and irresponsible". She said they "frankly do not understand the nature of what's at stake here and the nature of the way in which the financial system is operating under the pressures of the credit crunch".

The Conservatives have called for new powers for the Bank of England, and the Chief Secretary said they had already provided exactly those new powers.

She said: "That is exactly what we did. We did that in February and in March and the Conservatives voted against it.

"David Cameron and George Osborne voted against the very powers they are calling for now. That's incoherent and irresponsible of them, and I just think it means they simply do not understand how the system's working."

Northern Ireland

The Politics Show also reported on the latest news from the merger negotiations between the Conservatives and Ulster Unionists: that any deal might include one Ulster Unionist in a future Conservative cabinet.

Commenting, the Conservative Shadow Northern Ireland Secretary, Owen Paterson, said: "We would like to see fully paid-up members of parliament participating at all levels in Westminster. Operating in back-bench committees - operating in the front-bench team - becoming ministers, if we became the government.

"Ultimately, why not, becoming cabinet ministers. Why should Northern Ireland be different? Why shouldn't Northern Ireland have politicians from here playing a full part in our national politics?"

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