Posted: Tue 21st Apr 2020

‘Enough is enough’ family of Carl Sargeant agree for Welsh Government to call off independent inquiry

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Apr 21st, 2020

The Welsh Government has called off the independent inquiry into events prior to the death of Alyn and Deeside AM Carl Sargeant.

First Minister Mark Drakeford issued a statement today saying he’s accepted recommendations to call off the inquiry and that the government has agreed to ‘meet reasonable outstanding legal costs of the Sargeant family.’ 

The Alyn and Deeside AM committed suicide at his home in Connah’s Quay on November 7 2017 – four days after he lost his cabinet job in the Welsh Government following allegations made about his personal conduct.

The Sargeant family has issued a statement saying they, “have come to realise that the inquiry process would be unlikely to give us the answers we seek. So, enough is enough.”

The statement goes on to say: “We must draw a line under everything and let our grieving process begin.

We also have no desire to distract the Welsh Government at a time of national crisis.

Two and half tortuous years have passed since Carl’s death, yet during the worst of times we have been supported by many people.”

In his statement, First Minister Mark Drakeford said he was “grateful” to the Sargeant family for their constructive engagement.

Mr Drakeford statement says: “Following the conclusion of the Coroner’s Inquest into the tragic death of Carl Sargeant, I told Members that I thought it was right that there should be a period of reflection and that I would assess what further steps should be taken, in consultation with the Sargeant family and other interested parties.

I subsequently invited the Chair of ACAS Sir Brendan Barber, acting in a personal capacity, to speak with the parties to see if an agreed way forward could be found. I am most grateful to Sir Brendan for agreeing to undertake this work.

I am also grateful to the family of the late Carl Sargeant and to the former First Minister Carwyn Jones for their constructive engagement.

As a result of his discussions Sir Brendan has made two recommendations to me.

First that the Independent Investigation should not proceed, and second that the Welsh Government should meet the reasonable outstanding legal costs of the Sargeant family.

I have decided to accept and to implement both.

I know that all parties involved now share a wish to bring an end to the public controversy in relation to the tragic death of Carl, allowing us all to remember him as the valued husband, father, colleague and friend that he was.

We would like to thank the First Minister for his statement today, the Welsh Government for the contribution they have made to our legal fees and Sir Brendan Barber for his role as a mediator in this process.

The Sargeant family statement goes onto to say:

“We want to thank the inquiry chair Paul Bowen for his work.

We’d also like to send our heartfelt thanks to our legal team, Leslie Thomas QC, Neil Hudgell and Victoria Richardson of Hudgell Solicitors, and our PR adviser Kerry Jack for their unfailing support throughout.

“Finally, we echo words Carl used many times: “Edrych ar ol ein gilydd” / “look after each other.”

 

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