Testimony to Grenfell Fire inquiry paints devastating picture of social murder


Testimony to Grenfell Fire inquiry paints devastating picture of social murder

Robert Stevens

24 May 2018

It took less than 48 hours from the opening of the inquiry into the Grenfell Tower fire to expose it as a cover-up.

Tuesday was the second day of moving commemorations by the bereaved families of those that died. Scheduled to last for up to two weeks, the initial statements made included several family members insisting that they would not accept any more lies and evasions from those they hold responsible.

The inquiry heard from Hisam Choucair, who lost six members of his family in the inferno, and from Karim Mussilhy, who lost his uncle, Hesham Rahman. The inquiry also heard a commemoration of Debbie Lemprell by her mother, Miriam, which was read out by Michael Volpe, the director of the opera where Debbie worked. Resha Ibrahim spoke about her sister Rania and two nieces, who also perished. Nick Burton, the widower of Maria Del Pilar “Pily” Burton, who died in hospital after the fire and is its 72nd victim, gave a moving tribute.

The last 12 months have seen the Conservative government and Kensington and Chelsea council treat the Grenfell bereaved and survivors with utter contempt—with many still living in hotels or temporary accommodation, despite repeated promises to rehouse them. Tuesday witnessed yet another example of the crass insensitivity of the authorities for families who remain deeply traumatised by the terrible events of June 14, 2017.

Around 20 survivors walked out in shock as video footage was shown during the tribute for the Choucair family. Included in the footage was Grenfell Tower on fire and people trapped in the building. The distress caused by the footage led one woman to collapse, with paramedics being called in to assist. People…

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