Home > News > Llanelli Star Column…. on Hillsborough Law call and Government ignoring key lessons

Honesty, integrity and telling the truth should be a basic requirement for all in public office and positions of responsibility. 

Too often, concealment and cover up has become the norm in order to avoid the scrutiny that comes when powerful individuals and organisations make decisions and carry out the functions that we set them up to fulfil.

One of the starkest examples of this can be found in the aftermath of the Hillsborough Disaster and I urged Rishi Sunak recently at Prime Ministers Questions to adopt the recommendations of the Bishop Jones Review into it.

It is now 34 years since 97 people died at the Liverpool v Nottingham Forest FA Cup Semi Final in 1989 and yet victims’ families are still fighting for justice.

For decades, senior police officers tried to place the blame on Liverpool fans.  It was only in 2016, after a sustained campaign by bereaved families, that it was confirmed that multiple failures by the police had led to their relatives losing their lives.

To date, no-one has been held accountable for that or for the subsequent cover up.  That cannot be right.

I called on the Prime Minister to change the law so that a new duty be placed on public authorities to tell the truth and proactively cooperate with investigations and inquiries.  Openness and transparency is the least we should demand of them.

I also implored him to ensure that those who find themselves victims of similar incidents be entitled to equal legal representation and access to public funding in the same way that Government and public authority lawyers currently do.

True to form, though, he continues to ignore the lessons provided by Hillsborough and instead defended a system that allows the powerful to hide and mislead the public at will.