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Gillingham MP Rehman Chishti under investigation after backing donor's housing plan

MP Rehman Chishti is under investigation following his support for a planning application made by one of his donors.

The Gillingham MP sparked anger among residents earlier this year, by writing to Medway Council in support of the application to build seven homes on former tennis courts behind Second Avenue in Gillingham.

Gillingham MP Rehman Chishti in the House of Commons. Picture: ParliamentTV
Gillingham MP Rehman Chishti in the House of Commons. Picture: ParliamentTV

Residents' association leader Oliver Fish was among those who noted there was a potential conflict of interest in Mr Chishti's support, as he had a financial connection with land owners the Jarvis family.

He said many felt betrayed by Mr Chishti, who had previously remained neutral on the application and had opposed similar "backland developments".

It has since been confirmed that Mr Chishti is the subject of an investigation by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards.

According to parliament.uk the matters under investigation relate to "conflict between private interests and the public interest" and "declaration of interests," relating to paragraphs 11 and 14 of the Code of Conduct for MPs.

Medway councillors turned down the application for seven homes for the third time earlier this year, in a decision roundly applauded by residents.

But opponents of the scheme were dismayed to see yet another application put forward in the wake of the decision, with Mr Fish noting the repeat submissions were beginning to damage people's mental health.

Mr Chishti has been approached for further comment.

Read more: all the latest news from Medway.

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