Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Hiding the truth

So Jack Straw has finally got his way and forced legislation through Parliament allowing for secret inquests when the subject might be contentious. Contentious meaning of course embarrassing for the government and liable to outrage the public.
Labour forces secret inquests Bill through the Commons

Secret inquests which will bar bereaved families and the public from attending hearings into controversial deaths were forced through Parliament last night.
The Government narrowly defeated opposition to the new powers by a majority of eight MPs in a highly charged vote in the House of Commons. Under the measures ministers will be able to order that an inquest is replaced with a secret inquiry whenever they deem it necessary.
But last night MPs and civil rights groups accused the Government of eroding the ancient right to a public inquest. Shami Chakrabarti, director of Liberty, which had strongly opposed the powers, said: "The British public has no taste for secret justice, particularly when the rights of grieving families are at stake. We will continue to fight for open jury inquests until the Government thinks again."
This has been on the cards for a while, ever since coroners started taking the government to task over deaths related to shoddy equipment whilst they fought (and died unnecessarily) in the war in Afghanistan.
That this is a direct erosion of democracy and liberty wont have even crossed their minds, to them keeping an embarrassing truth from coming into the public domain is the important thing. They simply do not understand that the relatives of those who die on the government's watch - whether in Stockwell or Helmand - are entitled to know why, even if it is supremely embarrassing for the Minister or the Government.

That they should be ashamed of themselves for doing this is obvious, that they are not is apparent, truly this is a despicable act by a shameless government who deserve to be annihilated in the next general election.

 

4 annotations:

Edgar said...

The 'Opposition' opposed it, but will not, when the time comes, repeal it.

Quiet_Man said...

That is always the worry isn't it.

subrosa said...

Auch QM I've just finished a post on this for publication later. Never mind.

Of course it won't be repealed. I never even bothered mentioning that in mine.

James Higham said...

It's appropriate then, in the light of this, QM, that I have just written of treason in a different context.