WOOLF MUST GO

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PUBLISHED: October 23, 2014 7:00 am

Poll: Should Fiona Woolf stand down as head of the historic child sex abuse independent enquiry?

The head of the independent inquiry into historic child sex abuse is coming under growing pressure to stand down, as a lawyer representing victims said her social relationship with former home secretary Lord Brittan “puts her beyond the pale in terms of her credibility”.
Fiona Woolf has been urged to quite as chairwoman of the Government's historic child abuse inquiry
Fiona Woolf has been urged to quite as chairwoman of the Government’s historic child abuse inquiry

Fiona Woolf yesterday confirmed she had attended two dinner parties at Lord Brittan’s house and hosted the Tory peer and his wife on three occasions, but insisted she did not have a “close association” with the former cabinet minister.
She told a parliamentary committee scrutinising her appointment that the former home secretary – who has denied failing to act on a dossier of abuse allegations in the 1980s – was “one of thousands” of people she knew in London.

Should Fiona Woolf stand down as head of the historic child sex abuse independent enquiry?
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But solicitor Alison Millar, who represents a number of abuse victims whose cases are likely to be raised in the inquiry, said the “general view” among her clients was that Mrs Woolf – the Lord Mayor of the City of London – “really does not have the necessary credibility to lead what is such an important inquiry for them”.
Asked whether Mrs Woolf should step down, Ms Millar told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “Yes. I think this evidence of dinner parties with Lord Brittan really puts her beyond the pale in terms of her credibility with my clients.”
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Mrs Woolf was appointed in September to chair the independent panel inquiry into UK institutions’ handling of child sex abuse allegations, after the initial nominee Lady Butler-Sloss stepped down over suggestions that she might be called upon to investigate the role of her late brother, former attorney general Lord Havers.
Downing Street has said Prime Minister David Cameron is “confident that Fiona Woolf and the panel will carry out their duties to the high standards of integrity required”.
Ms Millar told Today: “This is not about Fiona Woolf’s ability or her integrity. This is about her independence and her ability to lead this inquiry in a way that is credible to the survivors of abuse whom I represent.
“Somebody who seems to be on dinner party terms with a senior political figure whose knowledge this inquiry will be scrutinising is somebody who from the perspective of my clients does not have the necessary independence.
“The people that I am in contact with because they are my clients, or I am in contact with otherwise, the general view among them is that Fiona Woolf really does not have the necessary credibility to lead what is such an important inquiry for them.”

Comments for: “Poll: Should Fiona Woolf stand down as head of the historic child sex abuse independent enquiry?”

HelenPender

October 23, 2014 10:21 pm

To have used her Home Office seconded civil servant to run by her draft letter to the Home Secretary, advising Theresa May of her social interactions with Lord and Lady Brittan shows a calculating, highly manipulative personality. To then claim not to be a member of the establishment, having successfully climbed the exceptionally greasy pole to become Lord Mayor of London exhibits crass disingenuousness. No government of whatever hue wants to uncover this murky story. It should have wide ranging parameters as an official public enquiry and be headed by Prof Alexis Jay who headed the Rotherham enquiry. That would be far too dangerous. Given the internet stories that abound about Lord Brittan it is an insult to Victims who have had their lives ruined; to professionals who have had their careers ruined when they attempted to blow the whistle and frankly an insult to the British Public to expect us to accept someone on dining terms with the Brittans as an impartial judge. The wriggling by the establishment shows without any shadow of a doubt that this is so politically explosive that no government can ever risk the truth being uncovered.
Powerful paedophiles have clearly promoted one another for years. Jimmy Saville could not possibly have acted alone in so many institutions without protection. Operation Ore could have brought the issue to light in 2002. Police covet ups, political cover ups, special branch cover ups, security service cover ups. This enquiry is too much of a hit potato to look at the Kincorra Boys Home in Ireland – so they’re limiting it to England and Wales. All you need to swing a jury is two or three people. I would suggest this government has revealed itself as unwilling to do anything more than set up yet another whitewash.

OgfKef

October 25, 2014 2:12 pm

No she should not stand down. She should be sacked at once, no golden handshake, no pension, just out.

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