Former MPC member to oversee Blunkett inquiry

Sir Alan Budd, a former member of the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee, has been commissioned by John Gieve, the Home Office permanent secretary, to undertake an "urgent investigation" into claims that Home Secretary David Blunkett fast-tracked a visa application.

Sir Alan, who is also a former chief economic adviser to the Treasury, will head the inquiry into allegations that David Blunkett abused his position as home secretary to help a former lover with a visa application, the Ho