Suspicious bets raise questions over ABC selection process

“There are fresh demands to reform the system of appointing Archbishops after suspicious bets were placed on the appointment of the next Archbishop of Canterbury,” the Independent reports today:

Bookmakers suspended the betting after large sums were placed on the current Bishop of Durham succeeding Rowan Williams in the role.

The bets fuelled suspicion that senior figures were somehow involved in leaking information on the next Archbishop.

Information surrounding the appointment, which is made by Number 10 after recommendations from the Crown Nominations Commission, is usually cloaked in secrecy.

Although there is no suggestion that anybody broke the law in placing the bets, MP Chris Bryant called it “insider trading” and demanded reform of the system.

He told the Evening Standard: “It’s pretty shabby if someone had knowledge that Bishop Welby was on his way to becoming the Archbishop and put a bet on it.”

He went on: “The whole system for appointing an Archbishop is a complete shambles. I don’t see why there has to be this secrecy around it.

See full story here.

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