MP Wicks renews demand for urgent inquiry into Croydon riots

Malcolm Wicks: MP for Croydon North

Ahead of tonight’s post-riots community action meeting at the Oshwal Centre, Croydon North MP Malcolm Wicks has again called for a public inquiry into the events of 8/8.

“Croydon should establish its own inquiry into the borough’s riots, so that lessons can be learned,” Wicks said.

“The riots were at their worst in Croydon and the fact is that the thugs ruled the town for many hours.  Certainly in West Croydon the looters and the arsonists were in control, the police effectively absent.

“Was any of this preventable?  How did the police and the Council react?  Was there effective leadership and co-ordination?  These are the questions that require investigation.  I hope fervently that these things never happen again, but if they do, we must be prepared.”

Wicks praised individual police officers, fire fighters and citizens: “there was much bravery, indeed heroism”.

Speaking in the House of Commons emergency debate, Wicks had criticised the decision by senior Metropolitan Police Commanders to call the Croydon’s borough commander, Adrian Roberts, to take on duties at Scotland Yard, just before the riots started.

“I sense that the borough was rudderless and yobs seized this wretched opportunity.  It is therefore imperative that Croydon Council should establish an independent inquiry.”

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