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You might have already commented on this elsewhere on your more than excellent site. In the report on the DEFRA select committee of 14th November that you have posted, Margaret Becket says that Anderson is conducting his independant and full enquiry on his own

"If any of those inquiries were to decide they wished to take evidence in private rather than public would that cause you any disquiet?

(Margaret Beckett) It is slightly, as ever, delicate territory because these are independent inquiries and they are not being run by us, so it is obviously up to the person chairing each inquiry what procedures they adopt. And I believe - and obviously it is for him to say - that it may be that Dr Anderson may make public some thoughts about how he proposes to conduct his own part of the inquiry perhaps in the not-too-distant future if things go on as they are. Then it will be possible for people to explore with him what he intends to do and why

We know the members of the other two inquiries' sitting panels of members as it were, but we do not have any panel members for Dr Anderson's inquiry that I am aware of.

(Margaret Beckett) Dr Anderson is conducting it and he will have a secretariat but it is not fully in place.

He intends to conduct the inquiry solo, as it were, and take evidence without the assistance of other panel members?

(Margaret Beckett) Yes."

Surely this can't be true? These enquiries seem to be so "independent" that there is no check at all on what they do. Mind boggling.

On another matter, you kindly have a link to my site. My foot and mouth diary is now just a farm diary - with a link to your site for information. When I started my diary I was publishing every bit of information I could get hold of, but that is not necessary now. You provide all the information available. I did have a break from the diary for a while - just too tired and busy. I have restarted it as a farm diary (though obviously with bits about defra, fmd, etc, but as a personal record of life on a farm so people can see what farm life is like (on this farm anyway).

Thank you so much for all you are doing. I know how very tiring this sort of commitment is. I couldn't keep it up, back in August.

All best wishes,

Jo Rider
J & J Rider East Penrest Launceston
Cornwall
www.eastpenrest.freeserve.co.uk/foot-and-mouth.htm

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