Barristers from Leveson Inquiry to give evidence to Lords committee investigating public inquiries

11 October 2013

Mr Justice Jay, who as Robert Jay QC examined many of the witnesses during the Leveson Inquiry, will give evidence next Wednesday, October 16, to the House of Lords Committee on the Inquiries Act 2005

The Committee is investigating how well the Act ensures that public inquiries are carried out as effectively and thoroughly as possible.

The Lords will ask Mr Justice Jay why so many lawyers were needed for the Leveson Inquiry, when others have needed many fewer.

Jason Beer QC, who is one of the Counsel to the Al Sweady inquiry, will also be giving evidence to the Committee on these issues.

The Lords will question Mr Justice Jay and Jason Beer QC at 10.40 am, and questions will include:

  • Is it right that the Chairman alone should appoint Counsel to the inquiry?
  • Who should be involved in setting the terms of reference for an inquiry and at what stage?
  • Should anything be done at the start of an inquiry to estimate the length and cost?

In a second session at 11.55 am the Lords will then question officials who have been Secretaries of inquiries.

Lee Hughes CBE was Secretary of the Hutton Inquiry and the Baha Mousa Inquiry, and of the inquest into the death of Princess Diana. Alun Evans, currently the Director of the Scottish Office, was Secretary of the Detainee Inquiry.

The Lords will ask Mr Lee Hughes and Mr Alun Evans questions including:

  • Should a Chairman sit alone on the panel or with other members?
  • Should the Government have a dedicated inquiry unit to advise on the setting up of new inquiries?
  • How can the high costs, for example for staffing, IT and premises, be justified for some inquiries?

The evidence sessions will start at 10.40 am on Wednesday 16 October in Committee Room 4 of the House of Lords.

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