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Letters,
The Journal,
Newcastle.

Sirs,
With the appointment of Prof. Michael Dower as chairman of the Northumberland County Council inquiry, it looks as though a whitewash is in the making with only one week remaining to submit evidence (by 14th Dec).

How can a European union appointee be expected to be independent when all the available evidence points towards EU regulations and directives as being at the heart of the problem? If MAFF (now DEFRA) had taken the advice of the world's leading Foot and Mouth Disease scientists instead of the advice of a Surface Materials chemist, the epidemic could have been brought under control in a matter of days, as was the case in Holland. Because the government made the classic mistake of believing their own lies (regarding the number of cases), they followed the EU procedure for dealing with a Foot & Mouth OUTBREAK when in fact they were dealing with an EPIDEMIC, which can only be controlled by vaccination.

It is only thanks to a report in the Journal (1st Dec.) that I read about the inquiry. Where was it previously advertised? On a telegraph pole in the middle of Kielder Forest?

Yours,
name and address supplied


Dear Editor

Because of his close links with the EU, Professor Dower cannot be regarded an independent as the procedure for dealing with an outbreak of fmd is laid down in EU regulations. Those affected by the epidemic are aware that most of the problems and incompetences arising during the outbreak were due directly to EU directives and instructions. Therefore it is highly improbable that he will take an unbiased view when evidence suggests these regulations were at the heart of problem.

This vital inquiry has not been widely advertised enough. Given the short period of time the public have had to respond as well as the fact that someone with such close EU ties has been appointed as Chairman suggests that the independent inquiry promised to the people of Northumberland will not be so independent after all. It is already beginning to look like a New Labour whitewash.

NCC must allow us to have the truly independent inquiry we deserve, otherwise the costs to the taxpayer will be totally in vain.

Yours sincerely
name and address supplied


06 December 2001
Karon Stubbs,
Democratic Services,
Personnel and Administration Dept,
County Hall,
Morpeth,
Northumberland,
NE61 2EF.

Madam,
I wish to make a formal objection to the appointment of Prof. Michael Dower as chairman of Northumberland County Council Foot and Mouth inquiry. As a European Union appointee, he cannot possibly be regarded as independent when the procedure for dealing with an outbreak of F&MD is laid down in EU regulations. Nor is he likely to take an unbiased view when the evidence suggests these same regulations have been at the heart of problem.

I also wish to take issue with the very short time allowed to produce evidence considering the magnitude of the disaster, and to complain about the inadequate advertising.

Yours sincerely,
name and address supplied


Dear Ms. Stubbs

Northumberland foot and mouth independent public inquiry

I should like to formally object to the appointment of Professor Michael Dower as leader of Northumberland County Council Foot and Mouth inquiry.

Because of his close links with the European Union, Professor Dower cannot possibly be regarded as an independent as the procedure for dealing with an outbreak of foot and mouth disease is laid down in EU regulations. People who have been affected by the epidemic are aware that most of the problems and incompetences arising during the outbreak were due directly to EU directives and instructions. Therefore it is highly improbable that he will take an unbiased view when evidence suggests these regulations were at the heart of problem.

I should also like to formally complain that this vital inquiry has not been widely advertised enough. Given the short period of time the public have had to respond as well as the fact that someone with such close EU ties has been appointed as Chairman leads me to believe that the independent inquiry promised to the people of Northumberland will not be so independent after all. It is already looking like a New Labour whitewash before it begins.

Northumberland County Council must give us the opportunity to have the truly independent inquiry we deserve and were promised, otherwise the costs to the taxpayer will be totally in vain.

I shall be submitting questions in due course.

Yours sincerely
name and address supplied

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