Sir Ed Davey: Covid inquiry needs to happen as soon as possible

13 May 2021, 08:26

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

Lib Dem leader Sir Ed Davey has urged the Prime Minister to meet with families bereaved by Covid immediately ahead of a planned public inquiry.

On Wednesday the Prime Minister announced a public inquiry into the Government's handling of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Prime Minister said the process - which will hear evidence under oath - will put "the state's actions under the microscope".

But families of those who've died with Covid-19 and politicians from other parties think it should start much sooner.

Lib Dem leader Sir Ed Davey told LBC's Nick Ferrari that the investigation should happen much sooner to enable the lessons of the pandemic to be learnt.

"We need to learn the lessons because this hasn't gone away," Sir Ed said.

The Lib Dem politician said he did not want to get in the way of healthcare staff trying to fight the virus, but it was important to look into the government's handling of the virus as soon as possible.

He told Nick that families of those who had died wanted to see the inquiry take place sooner too.

Families bereaved in the pandemic welcomed Mr Johnson's announcement that there will be an independent public inquiry into the handling of the crisis, but said the start date of spring next year is "simply too late".

Jo Goodman, co-founder of the Bereaved Families for Justice group, who lost her father Stuart to Covid, said: "It sounds like common sense when the Prime Minister says that an inquiry can wait until the pandemic is over, but lives are at stake with health experts and scientists warning of a third wave later this year."

Number 10 has defended the timescale, stating that "these sorts of inquiries do require a great deal of Government time with officials who are currently working on our Covid response".