Independent investigation must be given all the time it needs, and all the additional support it can get

Responding to the motion on the CSE report to Oldham Council last night [16/03/22], Liberal Democrat Councillor Sam Al-Hamdani said: “Everyone must always put the needs of survivors first, and it is important to recognise that independent experts in this area are in favour of the extension of the investigation. 

“It is still justified to ask questions to ensure that the investigation gets all the support it needs. If some of the delays in the process of the report were unnecessary, we must identify that and ensure that these extensions do not happen again, particularly for those who have already come forward and given their evidence.

“Regardless of the outcome of the vote, I would like to see the Council reach out to the investigation team and the Home Office, and if any national support can be found to aid them in the investigation, it must be taken.

“It is also clear that Malcolm Ridgeway and Gary Newsome have a track record of showing neither fear nor favour, as their report into Operation Augusta shows, and we could hope for no better investigators. 

“All our efforts should be to provide any additional help we can, so that together we can better support survivors and help deliver a fair, transparent report that will give them some measure of confidence that their stories have been heard, and that action has been and will be taken as a result.”

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