Former United Kingdom Prime Minister Theresa May disclosed a minister hid in a closet to avoid seeing Hillsborough Disaster victims’ relatives.
The former prime minister declined to identify the politician. Yet, she did imply that the encounter occurred within the context of Whitehall’s unwillingness to ‘rake over the past’ by reopening the investigation into the 1989 disaster.
Police failures revealed in 2012
May was home secretary from 2010 to 2016 before becoming prime minister. She spoke publicly about her efforts to preserve the Hillsborough Independent Panel’s mandate. The previous Labour administration established it to provide the ‘whole narrative’ of the accident. On April 15, 1989, 97 people died in a human crush.
The panel’s findings in 2012 overturned the initial inquests’ accidental death convictions from 1991. The 2012 panel found police failures at fault for the deaths and the hundreds of injuries. In the House of Commons, then-Prime Minister David Cameron publicly apologized for the government’s missteps. He also lamented subsequent efforts to place responsibility for the disaster on Liverpool fans.
What did Theresa May say about the Hillsborough Disaster?
Also, May claims in-person family visits inspired her to keep working to get the inquest’s findings reversed.
In an interview with BBC Radio Merseyside, May said some colleagues did not look forward to meeting mourning families. In her words, a high-ranking minister “hid in a cupboard” rather than show up.
“There was just a sense of ‘why should we do this, this has been going on for so long, let’s just close the door on it.’ There was, I’m told, but this is third or fourth hand, one secretary of state who hid in a cupboard rather than meet the families,” May disclosed.
The minister has remained anonymous. The mother of one of the teenagers killed in the disaster labeled that person “a disgrace.”
PHOTO: IMAGO / Action Plus
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