INDEPENDENT NEWS

Streets Of London: Hutton Inquiry Update - Day 19

Published: Mon 22 Sep 2003 11:31 AM
From The Streets Of London with William Moloney
Hutton Inquiry Update - Day 19
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Today the Inquiry was intended to shift back to issues surrounding the naming of Dr. Kelly with witness from the MOD personnel and press offices. Richard Hatfield, Personnel Director MOD and the MOD Director of News Pam Teare were to be the main witness.
However, these witness were slightly overshadowed by the fact that Andrew Gilligan, BBC Today Reporter, was called back for the third time and the second day in a row. Also, computer experts were called to testify in regards Mr. Gilligan’s Palm Pilot Computer, were he has said he took his notes of his conversation with Dr. Kelly.
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Richard Hatfield, Personnel Director, MOD. (Continues giving evidence from yesterday)
Mr. Hatfield admitted he had not asked Dr. Kelly’s consent to be named. He admitted that Dr. Kelly was not informed of the Q and A system devised by the MOD that would confirm his name to any journalist that was named. All Dr. Kelly knew of was a statement was to be made regarding an unnamed official had come forward.
Mrs. Kelly’s testimony that the MOD had betrayed her husband came as a surprise to him, Mr. Hatfield said, as “ I think we gave him a lot of support”.
Mr. Hatfield said he thought that probably Dr. Kelly had not prepared his wife for what would happened when he was named.
Dr. Kelly’s naming came from his act of talking to Andrew Gilligan, he said.
Mr. Hatfield said there was a “fundamental failing” in the way that Dr. Kelly dealt with his press contacts and in hindsight, Mr. Hatfield should have started disciplinary proceedings against Dr. Kelly.
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Pam Teare, Director of News MOD
Ms. Teare said that the Q and A was the fairest way to discuss the issue with journalists, as there was more than one name in the ring. And it only because a guessing game due to the journalists.
She said that Sir Kevin Tebbit had signed off on the Q and A procedure and Geoff Hoon had been present when the naming strategy had been discussed.
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William Wilding- Computer Expert.
Mr. Wilding has been called in to examine Mr. Gilligan’s Palm Pilot, which he took the notes on of his conversation with Dr. Kelly.
Mr. Wilding testified that on examining the Palm, he found two notes of the Conversation with Dr. Kelly, only the second naming Alistair Campbell. He could not explain this sudden appearance of the name.
Mr. Wilding also said that there was a date discrepancy between the day the notes were saved and the day that Dr. Kelly and Mr. Gilligan meet. Mr. Gilligan had explained this to Mr. Wilding as due to the wrong date being programmed in.
Professor Anthony Sammes, another computer expert, told the inquiry that Mr. Gilligan’s Laptop could produce fresh evidence and Mr. Gilligan has now submitted that to the inquiry for examination.
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Andrew Gilligan, Defence Correspondent for the Today Programme, BBC
Mr. Gilligan denied doctoring the notes on his Palm Pilot to include the name of Alistair Campbell. The second version, in which the name appears, is because he and Dr. Kelly went through the notes at the end of their conversation.
He said that he could not recall when it happened, but it was certainly Dr. Kelly that brought up Alistair Campbell’s name.
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