A Tory MP has apologised in the Commons after inadvertently turning on his musical tie while making a speech.
Nadhim Zahawi’s red charity tie emitted a tinny tune which was amplified by a microphone hanging above his head.
Deputy Speaker Dawn Primarolo advised the Stratford on Avon MP to be “more selective” in his choice of neckwear in the chamber.
Mr Zahawi was speaking in an Opposition-led debate on the future of the Educational Maintenance Allowance (EMA) when an unidentifiable tune rang out for about 20 seconds.
As MPs looked around the chamber for the source, Mr Zahawi realised what had happened and switched off his tie.
“I apologise,” he said. “It is my tie to support the campaign against bowel cancer that was making that noise. It is a musical tie.”
Ms Primarolo called for order, saying: “Perhaps next time the honourable gentleman will be more selective in the ties he wears in the chamber and then we won’t need the musical accompaniment.”
Mr Zahawi replied: “Your words of wisdom are taken on board and I apologise to you.”
Later in the debate, Labour’s George Howarth (Knowsley) opened his speech by saying: “Unfortunately I don’t think I’m going to be able to compete with the honourable gentleman with regards our respective ties – but I rather hope I’ll surpass him on the arguments he’s just made.”
Mr Zahawi donned the tie as part of a Loud Tie campaign run by national charity Beating Bowel Cancer.