SENIOR councillors and decision-makers must step down from their roles while they are investigated over charges of corporate manslaughter at Grenfell Tower, Labour said yesterday.
Kensington MP Emma Dent Coad claimed that it was “impossible” for anybody who was involved in authorising the use of cladding on the west London tower block to command the confidence of the public.
She was speaking after Scotland Yard announced on Thursday that there were “reasonable grounds” to suspect Kensington and Chelsea Council and the Kensington Tenants Management Organistion (KTMO) of corporate manslaughter.
Those who were involved in key decisions will now face formal police interviews as part of the investigations.
While the council’s leader and deputy leader eventually resigned following criticism over their despicable response to the tragedy, many Cabinet members remain in post.
Ms Dent Coad said: “I really don’t see how anybody who was anywhere near the actual decision-making process could possibly continue working, any of them at all.
“It would be impossible for them to continue, I don’t see anyone can have any trust at all if they were anywhere near that decision.”
General union Unite welcomed the corporate manslaughter charges saying people have to be held accountable for their actions in the run-up to and aftermath of the devastating blaze that killed at least 80 people.
The union is representing 30 families who were affected by the fire and have applied for core participant status in the public inquiry.
However campaigners have urged police to consider gross corporate manslaughter charges which can carry prison sentences for those convicted. The maximum penalty for corporate manslaughter is a fine.
The calls were echoed by survivors who said the current investigation is “a start but it’s not far enough.”
Sajad Jamalvatan, a biomedical engineering student who lived on the third floor of Grenfell Tower, told the Evening Standard: “We want to see individuals who took the decisions which led to so many dying to face justice. We want individuals in the dock and for them to go to prison.