Following today’s announcement of a new chair of the CSA inquiry, Bassetlaw MP John Mann has called for significant resources to be made available to make up for a “wasted six months.”
Mann commented: “Theresa May has finally appointed the third Chair of the Inquiry – which can only be described as better late than never. The Government now needs to provide the resources needed to make up for six wasted months.”
“I am also calling on the Government to ensure the following:
1. Survivors groups need to be at the heart of all the inquiries and there should be no file that is not made available nor any witness who is able to avoid interview.
2. The Inquiry has to be time-limited, completed within a maximum of two years and needs to have proposals for dealing with support for victims that come forward by September. Clear regulations on support for victims are needed because of the current chaos and lack of support available, which is horrendous. Lives will be lost if the current lack of support is not remedied.
The Inquiry should release its initial findings by September of this year.
3. Local inquiries should be held throughout the country based on the Rotherham inquiry including the immediate start of an inquiry in Nottinghamshire where at least three different allegations have been made of the systematic destruction of files.
4. Civil servants, former Special Branch Officers and MI5 operatives need to have immunity from the Official Secrets Act so that they can provide information to the Inquiry and the police. I am aware of such people who would come forward to provide important information if such immunity is provided.”
John Mann MP has tabled an amendment to the Serious Crime Bill which is likely to be debated on Monday 23rd February. The amendment would provide immunity from prosecution under the Official Secrets Act for providing information relating to child abuse.