The Wrexham connection was evident in yesterdays (6th November) parliamentary debate on abuse allegations in North Wales.
Home Secretary Theresa May made a statement to The House of Commons on the allegations of abuse in North Wales, and in the debate a number of MP’s with Wrexham connections made contributions, including Labour’s Susan Ellen Jones (Clwyd South), Conservative Stuart Andrew (Pudsey) a former Wrexham Councillor and Labours Ian Lucas (Wrexham).
One of the most interesting contributions came from Conservative MP Karen Lumley (Redditch) who is a former Clwyd County Councillor having represented Borras Park ward on the council.
Karen Lumley said “I was a Clwyd County Councillor representing Wrexham at the time of the North Wales children’s homes inquiry and was on the panel that looked at the report that was never published. Let me tell the House (Commons) that its contents were horrendous.
Can the Secretary of State assure me and the House that no stone will be left unturned to make sure the people who came forward can have closure and that those responsible for these dreadful crimes can be punished’.
You can read the full statements to the Commons here.
Further, North Wales Assembly Member Mark Isherwood asked the First Minister to ensure that a number of past issues are taken into account. Raising the matter in the Assembly Chamber with the First Minister yesterday, Mr Isherwood said :
“It is now several years since Mr Messham made his allegations to me. I have shared those confidentially with the NSPCC and will not say any more about that. However, it is also several years since the solicitor who represented Mr Messham against false charges of benefit fraud stated publicly that he was threatened and intimidated, and it is several years since the internal audit manager in Flintshire, when asked to investigate matters relating to the Waterhouse tribunal, stated that he was threatened and intimidated.
“Will you ensure that any inquiry or investigation takes into account that there was protected disclosure, in the employment tribunal action that Flintshire’s internal audit manager, Mr Sutton, brought and won, that massive salaries and overtime payments were paid to an administrative worker servicing the Waterhouse inquiry into child sexual abuse, knowing that Sir Ron Waterhouse told me in person that he had come to believe that documentation was withheld from his inquiry?”
The First Minister replied “The Member makes serious allegations, and these need to be investigated. It is important that any police investigation is conducted by a body from outside north Wales. The UK Government has put that in place. That is essential for there to be complete confidence in any investigation or inquiry. It is also important that we include the children’s commissioner’s office, a body that did not exist at the time the allegations were made, and so it is untainted, if I may put it that way, by any of the allegations made in the past. People will have the opportunity to make their allegations, to present evidence and make their views known to the children’s commissioner. However, it is absolutely crucial that these allegations be investigated thoroughly and via a process involving both Governments that inspires confidence in the public.”