Amendment 119A

Part of Victims and Prisoners Bill - Committee (4th Day) (Continued) – in the House of Lords at 9:00 pm on 7 February 2024.

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Photo of Lord Ponsonby of Shulbrede Lord Ponsonby of Shulbrede Shadow Spokesperson (Justice), Shadow Spokesperson (Home Affairs) 9:00, 7 February 2024

My Lords, I thank my noble friend for moving his Amendment 119A and speaking to his other two amendments, and for the various examples he gave of the reason for the independent public advocate. Of course, there will be more substantial groups on this later, which we will not get to tonight. The noble Lord, Lord Marks, explained very clearly why the issue of retrospectivity should not apply in the types of cases we are talking about.

I thank the noble Lord for doing that. However, I do not thank him for speaking to Amendment 120 because he chose my example. I have not been able to think of another one while I have been sitting here. As the noble Baroness, Lady Sanderson, reiterated, there are occasionally incidents where there is a huge amount of public interest and concern. The noble Lord, Lord Marks, made the point that many lives are touched by incidents such as Fishmongers Hall even though fewer people were killed. It is about giving discretion so that the Secretary of State “may” declare that an independent public advocate would be suitable for this case.

We will have much wider debates about the roles of the IPA. I pay tribute to my noble friend for the many years of work he has done on this. I look forward to hearing the Minister’s response.