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In direct response to Blair`s cowardly insistence that there will be no Open Public Enquiry, whereby Government ministers, civil servants and others can be cross examined under oath, Cumbria County Council Leader Rex Toft announced yesterday that Cumbria is to hold its own FMD enquiry to cries of "hear hear!"

Rex Toft said "I hope this enquiry will help Cumbria to close the chapter on the most traumatic year in modern times. If the Government had held a National public enquiry I think it unlikely that we would have had one in Cumbria - it is because they have refused that we think it necessary to have our own."

Councillor Stewart Young, Socialist leader on the CCC said "Yesterdays announcement was the first the group had known of it. I think this is politically motivated, designed to attack the Government." Rex Toft said there would be no Witch Hunt!

How stunningly astute of Labour Councillor Young!

Of course this enquiry is politically motivated. Was it not his leader, Blair, who took personal control of FMD operations in March? Was it not his party that persued a policy of killing in excess of 11 million animals, the vast majority healthy? Was it not his party that wasted billions of pounds in the eradication of FMD and was it not the Labour Government who have lied, lied and lied from day one and, as is now highly likely, months previous to the "official" outbreak? How can the enquiry not be politically motivated?

Concillor Toft we applaud your decision! However this is a witch hunt! Those guilty of incompetence, lying, bullying, coercion etc. MUST be called to justice!

This sad and tragic chapter will NEVER close until we have the TRUTH! However what Cumbria is now doing may go along way to help that!

Heart of Cumbria
"Seeking the Truth"