Bob Ainsworth makes a speech in the House of Commons during the Public Bodies Bill debate on the need to establish the Office of Chief Coroner

The most telling intervention on the hon. Member for Brigg and Goole (Andrew Percy), who moved the amendment, was from the hon. Member for South Antrim (Dr McCrea), who asked how we got to where we are. After three years of consultation, cross-party agreement and a full examination of what was needed, how did we get to a position in which that has been scrapped and thrown away by the Government as part of a bundle of measures intended to save costs—costs that they will not even share? How did we get to a position in which the Government continually say that there was constructive dialogue with organisations which basically claim that there has been skulduggery and no effective dialogue with them at all?

When the right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed (Sir Alan Beith) said he wanted clarification, the Minister made it clear from a sedentary position that no High Court judge would have the words “chief coroner” added to his title. There will be no independent leadership for the coronial system under what is proposed. It is the Government themselves who are causing that delay, not the hon. Member for Brigg and Goole or those of us who want to see the creation of the office of the chief coroner. It is the Government who are causing the delay and the only way to move them is to support the amendment so ably moved by [the hon. Member for Brigg and Goole]”. 

(Hansard, 25th October 2011)


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