I was very pleased to be invited to chair this important investigation as I believe it is important to our democracy that the UK has a thriving and effective Official Opposition. The Panel has been carrying out important preparatory work and has now reached the stage of calling for information and evidence from interested parties
My fellow panel members and I are dedicated to working diligently and energetically on this investigation. Our pledge is that we will carry out our work independently of the Labour Party.
As well as dealing with important organisational and cultural questions concerning the Labour Party we understand the personal element involved. We know this investigation is important to those affected by the leaking of the antisemitism report.
We cannot force anyone to bring information to us but I hope all those with an interest in the issue will see the value of contributing. That way we can build the fullest picture of the circumstances and content of the leaked report as well as the current culture and practices of the Labour Party. The more information we receive the better we can frame recommendations for the party’s future culture, organisation and structures.
This investigation will be carried out professionally, impartially and independently. We do need time to consult widely and to allow those wishing to respond to collate and send their evidence to us and we need to ensure that our work is aligned with other related investigations into the Labour Party, both internal and external.
I have told the Labour Party that its original proposal for a July 15th timescale is impractical and we are aiming to publish our final report by the end of 2020.
Martin Forde QC