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Page last updated at 09:13 GMT, Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Ebdon 'has experience for access job

Higher Education Secretary David Willetts has told the Today programme's Sarah Montague that he endorses the appointment of Professor Les Ebdon as the new head of the Office of Fair Access despite opposition from some MPs, including Conservative backbenchers.

The Business Secretary, Vince Cable, had denied ignoring MPs' concerns by forcing through the appointment at the organisation responsible for ensuring that universities in England are doing enough to admit students from poorer backgrounds.

The announcement was made in the House of Commons by Vince Cable and despite not being present to hear it, David Willetts said it was "absolutely clear" that Professor Ebdon was committed to strong universities and spreading social mobility.

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