POLITICS

David Lammy Demands Answers On Grenfell Fire Police Investigation

'Most people see this as a crime and they know that rich and powerful organisations get away with crimes.'

22/06/2017 13:22 BST

Grenfell Tower families see the blaze “as a crime” and crave more information from power-holders about the police probe, David Lammy has said.

In an emotional speech in the House of Commons, the MP for Tottenham, who lost close friend Khadija Saye in the inferno, claimed “rich and powerful organisations get away with crimes” and called on Theresa May to reveal more about an ongoing criminal investigation into the fire. 

He called on the Prime Minister to disclose what resources the Metropolitan Police had at their disposal and if police had made any arrests.

May replied that officers “will get to the truth and they will leave no stone unturned”, but refused to say more.  

It comes as questions intensified about the cladding used on an estimated 600 tower blocks in the UK. It is believed the cladding on Grenfell Tower was flammable and allowed the blaze to spread rapidly. 

So far, 79 people have been confirmed dead in the tragedy but it is feared the death toll could rise.

Marko Djurica / Reuters
The Met said 79 people have died in the fire

“All members across this house will have mentored, employed, and want to see flourish, young people,” said Lammy, who was visibly upset.  

“My wife principally, and I, mentored, employed and encouraged a young woman called Khadija Saye, who lost her life with her mother on the 20th floor of Grenfell Tower. 

PA Wire/PA Images
David Lammy said the Grenfell Tower blaze is "seen as a crime"

“On her behalf, and all of the people that died, I urge the Prime Minister to say something more about the criminal investigation that was announced last week. 

“She has talked about the public inquiry but she understands that most people see this as a crime and they know that rich and powerful organisations get away with crimes. 

“Can she say what resources have been brought to bear by the Metropolitan Police? How big are the teams and how is it that we have not had any commentary about charges, about arrests or about the seizure of documents?” 

PA Wire/PA Images
Theresa May did not rule out criminal charges

May said: “Can I first of all say how sorry I am that the Rt Hon Gentleman has lost someone, a friend, in this terrible tragedy. 

“There are obviously many people in that position but it brings it home to this House and right into this chamber.”

She added: “In relation to the criminal investigation, a criminal investigation has been opened by the Metropolitan Police. 

“The Rt Hon Gentleman invites me to comment on that in a whole variety of ways. As he will know, this is an operational matter for the Metropolitan Police. 

“It is for them to determine whether any point at which that evidence could lead to charges or prosecutions. 

“We must let the Met do their job. They are doing it carefully. They are doing it properly but I can assure him and others that they will get to the truth and they will leave no stone unturned and if there are charges and prosecutions to be made then they will be.”