Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 22 October 2014

PM 'jealous' of Movember moustaches

David Cameron commended politicians in the Commons who were sporting growths on their upper lips of all colours and sizes

David Cameron has revealed his frustration at being unable to grow a moustache in solidarity with other MPs to raise awareness of prostate cancer.

The Prime Minister commended politicians in the Commons who were sporting growths on their upper lips of all colours and sizes.

He joked: "I have noticed a number of my colleagues suddenly resembling banditos and others on these benches.

"It's not something, I have to say, that I'm fully capable of myself. I'm jealous on those grounds as well. But this is important - better diagnoses, better knowledge, better information, are all vital to beat prostate cancer."

Mr Cameron was in good company, however, as fellow Tory MP ( Lichfield) Michael Fabricant was seen wearing a fake alternative to raise money for the cancer charity.

Mr Fabricant, who makes up for his lack of facial hair with an impressive head of blond hair, was unable to grow one and ordered one over the internet. He tweeted an image of himself wearing the moustache live on BBC Parliament during Prime Minister's Questions, saying £549 had been raised so far.

Mr Cameron's comments were prompted by Mr Fabricant's Commons neighbour George Freeman, member for Mid Norfolk, whose ginger moustache caught the eye of the Prime Minister.

He said: "One in eight men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer, the silent killer of middle aged men.

"Survival rates have risen from 30% to 80% because of breakthroughs in genetics and diagnostics and drugs, and charities like Movember, which have gone from five blokes raising 500 dollars to the world's biggest prostate charity raising 300 million.

"Will you agree to meet with me and representatives of the UK research charities to see what we can do to make the NHS adopt innovation more quickly?"

Mr Cameron replied: "I think you raise a very important issue, where everyone wants to see more research and better outcomes in terms of prostate cancer.

"And can I personally praise you for that magnificent growth on your top lip."

Head of policy and campaigns at Prostate Cancer UK Drew Lindon welcomed MPs' efforts to promote awareness.

"The support from MPs taking part in Movember this year has been tremendous and we can't thank everyone who has been involved enough. In the UK over a quarter of a million men and women have signed up, and the funds raised are making a huge difference to the way we tackle prostate cancer and men's health issues," he said.

"Not only is prostate cancer the most common cancer in men, it's set to become the most common cancer overall by 2030, making it one of the biggest health challenges of our time.

"Despite the Prime Minister's self-proclaimed inability to grow a Mo, we're delighted that he recognises the importance of finding a better diagnostic test and better treatment. We hope these words lead to action and the issue is brought higher up the political agenda without delay.

"If we are to help save more of the 10,000 men who die from this disease every year we need the full force of the establishment to get behind the issue and help us bring about real change.

"There is still time for people to visit Movember.com and give to their friends, family and colleagues - rewarding them for turning themselves into a "walking, talking billboard" for men's health over the last 30 days."

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