In praise of Simon Danczuk

Simon Danczuk has led the front pages this week with his explosive account of how an MP could hide a lifetime of abusing children.

The Westminster reaction to his Cyril Smith allegations? Embarrassed coughs.

Simon Danczuk

Good on Simon for having the courage to speak his mind. Since his 2010 election, itself a feat of endurance, he’s demonstrated a forensic mind and a canny eye for a story. He represents a diminishing Westminster breed, a ‘character’ who speaks with an authentic voice and with conviction. In the bland world of party slogans and ‘lines to take,’ he stands out. I admire him.

And despite these qualities, maybe even because of them, I hope our colleagues in the Parliamentary Labour Party are rallying round to support Simon. Because he’s about to realise what it’s like to be on the receiving end of the liberal establishment at its most savage.

Our central concern should always be the survivors of sexual abuse.

Yet the daggers are already being sharpened in the salons of North London. ‘How can he serialise in the Mail?,’ ‘Why is he criticising Labour people?,’ and ‘He’s not a proper journalist’ are just three of the attacks I’ve heard whispered in the last few days.

This is an attempt to undermine the substance of his argument: that career child abuser Cyril Smith covered up his activities with the collaboration of colleagues in Westminster and beyond. Since then the fog of collective amnesia has enveloped his party and anyone ever associated Smith.

I’ve not yet read Simon’s book but I saw the report of television journalist Liz MacKean, who was one of the first to highlight that Special Branch intervened so that Cyril Smith died avoiding the justice which his victims deserved.

As Simon pointed out on Radio 4 yesterday, Smith is not the first MP to be named as a child abuser. Two former ministers have named Sir Peter Morrison as a ‘well-known pedarast’.

There are three things that need to happen in relation to these serious allegations.

First, all the child abuse inquires in local authorities, the NHS and other public institutions such as the BBC must be wrapped into one national independent review of historic abuse cases. In Australia, they’re having a Royal Commission. We could adopt the same practice. MPs of all parties have written to the PM urging him to make a decisive move in the right direction.

Secondly, let’s acknowledge what the police privately admit: investigating child abuse is hopelessly under-resourced. Worse, whistle-blowers in the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre tell me their work is being diluted as the National Crime Agency (NCA) absorbs them into the new organisation. Recent parliamentary questions have yielded obfuscated answers on how many dedicated specialist investigators with arrest powers are working full-time on abuse inquiries. One whistle-blower told me that a very senior director at the NCA said child abuse is ‘not their priority.’

What also needs to happen is for political parties to unite on child abuse. They need to work with campaign groups who wish to see the law changed so we have mandatory reporting of suspected abuse in regulated settings such as private boarding schools. There’s a remarkable man called Tom Perry who runs the organisation Mandate Now- he needs our support.

I’ve already documented my reasons for asking the Prime Minister about an historic case of child abuse in October 2012.

Since then, there have been numerous arrests and people are facing charges, so I have to be careful what I write.

But I can say there have been some shocking claims made, many of which police are investigating.


Filed under Abuse, Fairbank, Fernbridge, News

28 responses to “In praise of Simon Danczuk

  1. Charlotte

    “In praise of Simon Danczuk”


  2. Pingback: The Tap Blog | In praise of Simon Danczuk

  3. It depends which dickens dossier you mean…andrea davison had one which was stolen not so long ago..

  4. cyn-swyddog

    Wedi dod o hyd lle y goflen a ddaeth i ben i fyny ar ôl Leon

  5. ex-officer

    It was played to an MP on Wednesday

  6. ex-officer

    Who says copieS of the Dickens dossier is missing?

  7. dpack

    save it as evidence for court is sensible but folk knowing it exists and a rough guide to the content is useful to ensure that it gets to court.

    i hope there are multiple secured copies just in case it needs to be made public at a later time unlike the dickens dossier which seems to still be missing .

    the actual tape referred to in the interview would be very useful to a court if it can be found .

  8. GMB

    Do not despair. What did the Germans used to shout?…’Britain we are coming’

  9. tdf

    @ GMB.

    That, I think, is wise.

  10. tdf

    @ topaz.

    Let’s go dancing.

  11. GMB

    I am really considering posting the part transcript of Mr Solanki’s 15 minute taped interview with online. As Mr Solanki has already been outed by an $xaro exclusive would it be equally wrong to put the record straight by posting his comments?
    This action I hope may encourage the other HM C&E men who also viewed the tape to also comment…providing $xaro does not name them as well

    • If the transcript has information which can add to public knowledge and awareness of this case, I absolutely think you should post it. I think the time has passed where we can place all our faith in the insitutions created to investigate and prosecute these crimes. There is just too much evidence of institutional corruption and collusion for that now. Whatever you may think of her and her documents, if Mary Moss had not put them before the public in the way she did, it is likely that no police investigation relating to Elm House would have taken place. The spur of publicity is a requirement for the progress of justice these days, it seems to me. I suspect some information from the police side is leaked for this exact reason, even. (I.e. some public knowledge of the direction of the investigation can make it harder to shut down.)

    • GMB

      I owe the readship this reply: Today I was asked not to post the TS. It was an instruction I could not refuse.

    • ” The photos taken by parents are being uploaded to a Russian website for perverts to leer at and make vile comments about them that will horrify the children’s families.
      Other images on the photo-sharing site, iMGSRC.RU, have been taken surreptitiously by perverts.
      They include images of children playing on a beach in Britain and at a petting farm.
      The sinister practice is legal as the photos are not deemed indecent, even though the comments show they are being used for sexual gratification.
      Last night crusading MP ***** Simon Danczuk **** said: “It’s every parent’s worst nightmare for photos of their children to be taken without their knowledge and posted on a website where sick people leer at children.”

      ****Mr Danczuk****, who has investigated child abuse in his own constituency of Rochdale, added: “These websites should be shut down immediately.”

      well obviously he is ‘obviously saying this’ for non alturic reasons’


  12. tdf

    The legislative record of the Thatcher administration on childrens’ rights was actually quite good with the aforementioned Children’s Act in 1989. As you say problem is of course follow-through or lack thereof.

  13. chrisb

    Can someone point me in the direction of Danczuk criticising Labour or any Labour politician concerning child abuse? I’m not saying he hasn’t, just that I personally have not seen him do it. Having a politician criticise politicians in another party is better than nothing and might end with the whole corrupt edifice being torn down. However, it would be better if we had politicians that asked for all parties to clean up their act and to bring their own abusers to justice.

    And we all know why there is not going to be a ROYAL commission into child abuse in the UK … or not one worth putting faith in.

  14. LJMT

    “The welfare of the child is paramount”. Looking forward to a time when society starts to get a grip on this stated aim from the Children’s Act. Part of the difficulty is that some MPs sensed a problem but never quite put their finger on the truth, and some were got rid of who began to realise, and lies told about the manner of their deaths. Certainly some MPs’ families knew not to allow their boys to use the gents in the Houses of Parliament until they were well of an age to defend themselves. Boothby and Driberg were dangers, and since then it has only got worse, and the names don’t get out until after death.

    Please God let the house of cards crumble for the sake of the children.

  15. tdf

    The house of cards is crumbling.

    “Denial, denial

    The infrastructure will collapse
    Voltage spikes”

    “Fall off the table, get swept under”

  16. Andy Barnett

    And so the clamour grows. Who will be next amongst MPs to show the courage and moral fibre of the likes of Tom Watson, John Hemming and now Simon Danczuk? Perhaps William Hague will demand justice for survivors of abuse outside of conflict. Perhaps Ed Milliband will commit the Labour Party to Mandatory Reporting. Or maybe some other MP will find the decency within them to stand up and share what they know about the abuse of children by those in positions of power.

  17. Kittiwake

    This has been kept in the news again this week thanks to him. It’s part of the drip drip which might expose the corrupt edifice in the end. Don’t lose faith.

    • nuggy

      i think his motives are much less altruistic than you think

      • Kittiwake

        Care to elaborate?

      • green

        It must take a Labour MP with a narrow majority over the Lib Dems to write about a dead Liberal MP from his own constituency! In the 2010 election year, he gave him a positive tribute, but this is 2014 and one year away from the next election!

        “Member of Parliament (MP) for Rochdale since 2010… In the 2010 election, Danczuk won 16,699 votes, unseating incumbent Liberal Democrat Paul Rowen, who received 15,810 … In 2014 Danczuk, with researcher and campaigner Matthew Baker, published Smile for the Camera: The Double Life of Cyril Smith, an expose of the child abuse committed by his parliamentary predecessor in Rochdale, Cyril Smith.”

        From Danczuk’s website (Cyril Smith apparently died in September 2010):
        “Sir Cyril was a towering figure who cast a large shadow over the political landscape in Rochdale. His influence was felt everywhere. I could not but admire the fact that as a member of what was then a very small party he managed to win five elections in Rochdale as a Liberal. I think this would be very hard to achieve today. Remember when Cyril won the seat there were only a handful of Liberal MPs.

        “Sir Cyril was one of the first politicians of the TV age to use his personality and charisma to enormous affect. In that respect he was ahead of his time.”

      • GMB

        Nuggy and Green you are bang on. After speaking to the hack I would advise people not to hold their breath. More chance of Rifkind releasing Mi5&6 files.

  18. anon

    I am reminded of the Jeremy Thorpe case, jeremy used to travel in his cheaufuer driven limo and get the driver to stop where he saw youing strret boys where jeremt would hold a 5 pound note against the widnow and call them over, the cheaufuer said he would often have sex in the back of the car and always have a towel there to clean himself up afterwards.
    when it came to court jeremt was clearly guilty, but he got off with it because he threatened to tell on all the other homosexuals in parliament using young boys

  19. green

    Bla, bla, bla. Do politicians in general really care any more about this subject (which concerns non-voters) now than they did “back then”, other than for scoring politicial points against their opponents, in the hope that the dumb masses will vote for them?