Friday, April 11, 2008
The full implications of the Government's response to the WAIT e-petition are now becoming apparent. As ever, John Hall is leading the charge, and he has asked us to publish his email to Public Inquiry Inspector, John Watson:
"It appears that the Public Inquiry which you are overseeing has definitely been pre-judged by the Prime Minister as shown in his latest news release on the No. 10 Internet site.
The Press are also compounding the situation by now referring to Gordon Brown`s statement as "PM refuses to give way over need for a Bypass".
I believe this declared decision has completely usurped the Public Inquiry and your requirement to deliberate on the findings which would result from a properly conducted Inquiry,which as yet has not occurred.
No cross examinations of the proposers of the Road scheme have taken place, and no evidence produced by those objectors has been introduced into the Inquiry Public forum, therefore it is my belief that not only have the Highways Agency and Tameside MBC failed to produce credible suitable evidence in support of their proposals, but a close examination and scrutiny of what they still intend to produce as evidence will now seemingly not be accepted as cause for the Bypass Inquiry disclosures to be considered by the Secretary of State or the Prime Minister.
It can only be concluded that a deliberate attempt to negate the Public Inquiry has been shown by the recent announcement,in which case this also now reflects on your own credibility to produce a report on your findings knowing the issue has been pre-judged already.
The declaration signed by the UK Government accepting the Aarhus Convention Protocols have now been breached and disregarded,and the following is but "one small component" of what has been usurped by Gordon Brown MP"
The press article mentioned is predictably the Glossop Chronicle which, as usual, slavishly regurgitates the government's drivel.
glossop.com are also carrying John Hall's line, and though we try to avoid repetition, their quote is good enough to merit inclusion here:
"In view of the intervention by Gordon Brown who has decided to usurp the process of the Mottram Bypass Public Inquiry and seriously undermine the Public Inquiry Inspector, he has also chosen to completely breach the Government ratified Aarhus Convention Agreement which clearly denotes the importance of total participation in a Public Inquiry with Supporters and Objectors involved in the decision making process.
This therefore has exposed the Prime Minister's intention to not comply with existing protocols in an existing Public Inquiry which will result in the European Justice Complaints Organisation in Geneva being made aware of this irrational and declared pre-judgement of an existing Public Inquiry, without the objectors having been given an opportunity to openly disclose their evidence and scrutinise in depth the evidence again being produced in October 2008 by the Highways Agency which this time it's hoped is not seriously flawed and unsuitable evidence before a Public Inquiry.
The Public Inquiry Inspector has been informed of the announcement by Gordon Brown which has completely destroyed even the credibility of his observations and opinions which should have been considered by the Secretary of State when the Public Inquiry is concluded"
Article 6 of the Aarhus Convention deals with public participation in decisions on specific activities listed in Annex I which would include proposals for nationally significant infrastructure projects such as the provision of energy, water, wastewater and transport systems. It obliges the Government to inform the public in a timely and effective manner about a proposal and the procedure for dealing with it. Public participation should be early, when all options are open and when public participation can be effective. Procedures must allow the public to submit any comments, information, analyses or opinions that it considers relevant to the proposed activity at a public hearing or inquiry. Due account must be taken of the outcome of the public participation.