Serious task: New Zealand High Court Judge Lowell Goddard has been appointed as the third chair of the inquiry into historical child sex abuse.

Serious task: New Zealand High Court Judge Lowell Goddard has been appointed as the third chair of the inquiry into historical child sex abuse.

Dame Justice Lowell Goddard got a glowing  endorsement from Keith Vaz, the Labour chair of the home affairs committee, last week after she appeared before his committee in a pre appointment scrutiny hearing, writes David Hencke.

Although Theresa May, the home secretary, made sure the committee could only endorse not approve the appointment, MPs this time decided that the best decision was to end  the controversy which dogged the past two chairs of the child sex abuse inquiry who both had to quit.

As Keith Vaz said: “We were impressed by the outstanding credentials of Justice Goddard, and the open and transparent way in which she gave evidence to the Committee. We believe she has the necessary skills and dedication to carry out this complex task effectively.”…

“We are confident that Justice Goddard will establish full independence from the Home Office and that she will shape and lead the inquiry in the manner she decides, but with proper consideration for the survivors. This is an important moment for the Inquiry, first established 221 days ago, and is an opportunity to renew the process after two false starts. We wish her well.”

The actual report by MPs was less favourable that Mr Vaz’s glowing testament and raised a number of issues that should be addressed.
For a start it pointed out that the decision not to appoint any survivor to the committee meant that the promised advisory survivors committee must be beefed up.
Read the rest of the article on David Hencke‘s blog.

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