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Call for Accountability: Victims Urge Stripping of Lord Clarke’s Peerage Following Damning Infected Blood Inquiry Report

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Infected Blood Inquiry: Victims Demand Revocation of Ken Clarke's Title

Lord Clarke, who served as health secretary under Margaret Thatcher, faced significant criticism in a recent inquiry report.

Political journalist @alixculbertson

Tuesday, May 21, 2024 10:27

Individuals impacted by the contaminated blood crisis have demanded that ex-health secretary Ken Clarke be deprived of his title as a lord.

Sir Brian Langstaff, who chaired a seven-year investigation, strongly rebuked Lord Clarke in his report concerning a tragedy where over 3,000 people died and more than 30,000 were infected with HIV and Hepatitis C in Britain due to contaminated blood products from the 1970s to the early 1990s.

The individual served as a health minister during Margaret Thatcher's tenure from 1982 to 1985, later ascending to the role of health secretary from 1988 to 1990, and subsequently held the positions of home secretary and chancellor in

In 1985, he referred to the infections as "the regrettable negative consequences that can occur from various medical practices."

Stay updated: Confirmation on compensation for infected blood scandal expected soon

Sir Brian indicated that by 1982, there was clear evidence that infections were being transmitted via imported blood products, suggesting that Lord Clarke's assertions were misleading, lacked honesty, and provided false reassurances.

Individuals affected have expressed that Lord Clarke should not be permitted to retain his position in the House of Lords. He received his peerage in 2020 from Boris Johnson.

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Des Collins, an attorney for 1,500 clients, stated that he should be deprived of his noble title.

"He mentioned that many have not been individually recognized, yet he was among those who were."

Discover more: Who faces criticism in the contaminated blood report?

Maria Armour, who received Hepatitis C from a blood transfusion in 1981 and discovered it only in 2004, stated: "He absolutely should relinquish his peerage.

"He and Jeremy Hunt ought to be detained for their dishonesty and the hubris they displayed throughout the investigation."

Government minister Mel Stride expressed to Sky News that Lord Clarke has consistently been "a decent and nice man" in his interactions with him, noting that he has "always been very polite and kind" to him.

He expressed his "concerns" about the issues highlighted regarding Lord Clarke in the inquiry report, noting that "there are definitely questions arising that must be answered."

He stated that the decision to revoke Lord Clarke's peerage is not his to make, as this responsibility lies with the forfeiture committee that determines membership in the House of Lords.

Further details on this topic: The contaminated blood crisis must deeply disturb the country. Podcast: The calamity was 'no mere mishap'.

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Revoking a peerage is an uncommon occurrence, necessitating a legislative act from Parliament. Nonetheless, those affected believe he should willingly relinquish his title.

Andrew Evans, the chairman and co-founder of the advocacy group Tainted Blood, expressed to Sky News, "I do believe Ken has a part in this, though he isn't solely responsible."

The report also criticized Lord Clarke for his seemingly indifferent attitude during his testimony regarding the procurement of blood from inmates, which continued until 1983.

His demeanor was characterized as "contentious," "unjustly scornful," and "belittling" towards those who have experienced hardship, with Sir Brian noting that he had a role in causing some of that distress.

The administration under Thatcher, followed by later governments and health ministers, consistently described the infections as "unintentional" and stated that patients received "the finest care possible based on the medical guidance available at the time."

The investigation found no evidence to support that claim and noted that the facts underlying it were ambiguous.

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