Gerald Jones, Labour MP for Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney, has urged the UK Government to commit to a full judge-led inquiry into the Horizon scandal, to get justice for the hundreds of sub-postmasters in Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney and across the UK, many of whom have been falsely pursued, imprisoned and bankrupted because of the Post Office’s faulty Horizon IT system.
Horizon is the name of a computer system used by part of the Post Office, which has come under criticism for errors in the system which have caused job losses, unwarranted prison sentences and bankruptcies for sub-postmasters across Wales and the UK.
When accountancy issues with Horizon reported financial irregularities, sub-postmasters both in Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney and across the country were wrongly accused of theft, and while there have been investigations and a High Court case into the scandal, Mr Jones has called on the Government to commit to a full judge-led inquiry to bring justice to the many sub-postmasters who have been wrongly accused and, in some cases, had their lives ruined as a result.
Mr Jones was one of a number of MPs from across different parties calling for a full judge-led inquiry, with the UK Government falling short and still yet to commit to this so far.
Speaking in Parliament on Wednesday, Mr Jones said:
“The scale of this scandal demands no less than a judge-led inquiry that has appropriate power.
“Why can the Minister not accept that that is the only way to examine fully and get answers on how this sorry saga went on for so long and caused so much misery and heartache to my constituents and thousands more across the country?”
Shadow Business Minister Chi Onwurah said:
“We need an inquiry not simply to learn lessons but to get to the truth. Only a judge-led inquiry can do that, with the Post Office compelled to co-operate. Will the Minister now agree to the judge-led inquiry we need? It is the very least the victims deserve.
“We need answers, not more delay. We will not rest until we get that and justice for all those wronged in this scandal.”