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Uploaded: 28 June 2004

David Blunkett calls for David Westwood' scalp. 

In the wake of the Bichard report on the Soham murder investigation, the Home Secretaries knee jerk reaction for the suspension of David Westwood is a measure of the erosion of our democracy, local and national, and an example of the Nanny State in action. You cannot in one breath rule from the top, over-riding local groups, committees, and the democratic process, and then blame people for living in a nanny state. It is not the people who have created the nanny state, nor are they to blame for the culture of dependence that the government has fostered at every turn, ignoring its own responsibility and culpability.

David Westwood has done the one thing that this government has never done and never will, he accepted and owned that he made mistakes, and made no excuses while doing so. If there was anyone I would trust to hold the position he does, it is someone who acted with this kind of integrity, David Westwood.

Tony Blair has a hearty disdain for the views of the people, he ignored us, and continues to ignore us, over Iraq and in the face of overwhelming evidence still refuses to be accountable for the debacle that Iraq is. The government continues to ignore Guantanamo Bay, it has imposed anti-terrorist laws and used them inappropriately, it seeks ever greater incursions into our freedom and liberty, not least Identity Cards and the proliferation of CCTV, which have a dubious record of reducing crime at best. 

The lessons learnt by David Westwood and his team uniquely fit them to continue to do their jobs to the very best of their ability. The underlying suggestion is that David Westwood is somehow culpable for the murder of the two children killed by Ian Huntley. Wrong. David Westwood heads up a team that is under funded, under supported, and under skilled in Information Technology and understanding Data Protection. Well, in that last at least, they are a lot wiser now. 

The support for David Westwood has been vocal, the Bichard report criticized the government, no heads rolling there, and what is Blunketts reaction? Press on with his ill conceived plan to oust David Westwood. Actually he's probably not yet set his desk to rights after such a resounding Knee Jerk.

Keith Lindsay-Cameron 2004

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