Tim Yeo stands down

Tim Yeo has stood down as chair of the energy and climate change committee, amid accusations of corruption.

Yeo, who was caught in a Sunday Times sting operation by reporters posing as lobbyists, will temporarily relinquish the role while he tries to clear his name.

He was caught on a secret video claiming that he coached witnesses appearing in front of his committee on how to respond to questions.

"I firmly believe that I have not breached the MPs' code of conduct in any respect and therefore await the outcome of the commissioner's investigation with confidence," he said.

Sir Robert Smith is stepping in as interim chair of the committee, although he will not be drawing Yeo's salary.

"The committee has unanimously accepted the chair'' recommendation that he absent himself from committee business for the duration of the investigation of the parliamentary commissioner for standards, following his self-referral at the weekend," a spokesperson said.

"The committee expressed confidence in Mr Yeo's chairmanship of the committee, but accepted the recommendation in order to ensure the continued effective and evidence-based work of the committee."

Blogger Guido Fawkes has written to the Met urging them to investigate Yeo for breaking parliamentary rules.

The register of members' interests reveals Smith, has registrable shareholdings relating to his policy brief.

He holds shares in Shell Transport and Trading, an integrated oil company.

Smith also accepted a ticket for the London 2012 gymnastics and a meal at the Royal Opera House from BP International, with a total value of £750.

Other shares are held in mining firm Rio Tinto, pharmaceutical giant Glaxosmithkline and life assurance firm Legal and General.