I welcome the announcement that all Post Office Horizon convictions will be overturned. This is long overdue and the right thing to do.
I was also pleased to get confirmation from the Minister that the families of those who have died, whose convictions are overturned, will also be able to access compensation.
You can watch my response in the House of Commons here:
I also welcome the decision by Paula Vennells, the former CEO of the Post Office from 2012 to 2019, to return her CBE. Ms Vennells was awarded a CBE in 2019, at a time when the extent of the Post Office scandal was clear.
We now need to know who decided to award this honour to Ms Vennells in the first place, and who also decided it was appropriate to appoint her to roles at the Cabinet Office and an NHS Trust.
My full response to Paula Vennells’ decision to return her CBE:
It was inevitable that Paula Vennells had no choice but to return her CBE given the immense public pressure of recent days. However, she should never have been awarded one in the first place.
I note No 10 has said they think this is the right decision, but we now need to know who in government thought it was a good idea to award an honour to Ms Vennells in 2019 when the evidence given in court as part of the sub-postmasters’ case between 2017 and 2019 made clear the true scale of this scandal.
Ms Vennells’ appointment to roles in the Cabinet Office and Imperial College NHS Trust in 2019, and today’s news that Ms Vennells was shortlisted to become Bishop of London, also raises questions around the judgement of people involved in these decisions and who they were. They need to explain these decisions. There are many individuals who need to be held accountable for the Horizon scandal. Today’s development is just the beginning.