The Survivors of Organised and Institutional Abuse (SOIA) group have today withdrawn its support for the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), with reports saying it has lost confidence in the process.
The Home Affairs Select Committee has today published a report in to the work of the IICSA. Its focus is on its independence and accountability; Dame Lowell Goddard; Counsel to the Inquiry; IICSA’s duty of care to those working on the Inquiry; the role of the Committee in scrutinising the work of the IICSA; and the future approach to the Inquiry’s work.
The second chair of the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry has today published an update statement. Meanwhile interest in the IICSA remains high with a debate in the House of Commons today and due from Prof Jay and others tomorrow.
The IICSA again makes the headlines today with more “revelations” of a fractured organisation unable to cope with the task it has been set. The Times reports it has investigated in particular the work of the former chair Dame Lowell Goddard and it reports various allegations made against her. Meanwhile, in advance of the expected imminent publication of the review of the work of Operation Midland by the Metropolitan Police, it is also reported that Lord Bramall has received a personal apology from Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe. That was in connection with having been publically named in an investigation in to allegations of the sexual abuse of children.
Media reports yesterday somewhat surprisingly reported that Ben Emmerson QC was thinking of resigning, an unusual announcement and one which surely heralds his departure. By last night he had been suspended due to concerns it is reported about his leadership.
Today the Home Affairs Committee heard oral evidence from the Rt Hon Amber Rudd MP, Home Secretary, and Mark Sedwill, Permanent Secretary, Home Office regarding the work of the Home Secretary. Dame Lowell Goddard who had been invited to attend did not and sent a memo (reported on yesterday) specifying her reasons for her resignation.
The resignation of Dame Lowell Goddard from the role of Chair of the IICSA has prompted many conspiracy theories and questions. There can be no doubt this is a low point for the work of the IICSA which now needs to rise phoenix like from the flames of criticism in the way thinking back four years London 2012 did after the spectre of overspend and lack of timely progress.