The Cabinet Office could take unprecedented action to prevent Boris Johnson’s unredacted WhatsApp messages and diaries from being given to the official Covid inquiry, according to information provided to the Guardian. Such a challenge regarding Lady Hallett’s request for unredacted messages and diaries would be seen as unprecedented.
By 4 p.m. on Tuesday, officials intend to respond to Heather Hallett, the inquiry chair. According to sources, they are likely to decline her request for a collection of documents regarding the former prime minister’s tenure at No. 10.
The news precedes a normal gathering not long from now among Johnson and the superb minster, Rishi Sunak, which sources said would allow the pair an opportunity to dispel any confusion over the line about new Partygate proof being given to police.
The government is refusing to comply with Lady Hallett’s request that the entire cache of messages and diaries be provided to her inquiry two weeks prior to the first public evidence sessions.
Legal advisors for the Bureau Office are said to have prompted that the Coronavirus request doesn’t have the abilities to demand admittance to all reports, raising the possibility of lawful discretion and an expected legal survey.
According to sources, launching a legal challenge to the decision made by the head of a public inquiry would be unprecedented.
Government insiders denied they would postpone the following phase of the Coronavirus request. On pre-pandemic preparedness, hearings are anticipated to begin in two weeks, with testimony from former senior Conservatives such as David Cameron and George Osborne.
Instead, insiders stated that the chair was in charge of the timing and could proceed regardless of whether she had all requested evidence.
They additionally said that giving over Johnson’s unredacted journals and WhatsApp messages from the previous state head and his associate Henry Cook would be an attack against their protection and the right to private approach conversation.
The Cabinet Office’s insistence that it will only release what it deems relevant is at the heart of the dispute, which is why numerous messages and diary entries have been deleted. It stated that it would not provide “unambiguously irrelevant material” and made an argument against Hallett’s request.
Hallett, on the other hand, stated in a ruling issued last week: The entire content of the required documents may be relevant to the areas of investigation I am pursuing.
She believes that the government has the right to request such a vast collection of documents due to the expansive scope of her inquiry’s terms of reference.
The Bureau Office will answer to Hallett’s interest by 4pm on Tuesday, yet may not quickly spread out its subsequent stages for challenging her decision, sources showed.
Daisy Cooper, the health spokesperson for the Liberal Democrats, stated that failing to provide all requested information would “make a mockery of this whole process and would be yet another insult to the millions of bereaved still waiting for justice.”
Source – Theguardian