David Lammy claims his visit to local prison cancelled by new justice secretary Raab

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Mr Lammy wrote that his visit to Pentonville prison was cancelled “vindictively” by Mr Raab  (Getty Images)
Mr Lammy wrote that his visit to Pentonville prison was cancelled “vindictively” by Mr Raab (Getty Images)

Labour MP David Lammy has claimed that his visit to local Pentonville prison was cancelled “vindictively” by new justice secretary Dominic Raab.

Writing on Twitter, the shadow lord chancellor and shadow secretary of state for justice said the cancellation, which had apparently happened “without justification”, was “outrageous”.

Mr Lammy went on to underline how it is his “constitutional duty to visit prisons”, before calling Mr Raab a “despot”.

He wrote: “Outrageous that in his first day as Lord Chancellor @DominicRaab has vindictively cancelled my visit to local Pentonville prison tomorrow without justification.

“It’s my constitutional duty to visit prisons. Only despots stop political opponents from scrutinising public services.”

Mr Raab was on Wednesday appointed as the deputy prime minister of the United Kingdom, lord chancellor and secretary of state for justice, during the cabinet reshuffle, leaving behind his post as foreign secretary which he had held since 2019.

In other news, concerns have been raised by both Labour and senior legal figures over Mr Raab’s suitability for the role after David Lammy’s office uncovered footage of Mr Raab saying that he did not support the Human Rights Act, reported The Guardian.

The clip from 2009 shows the then backbench MP saying: “I don’t support the Human Rights Act and I don’t believe in economic and social rights.”

In response, Mr Lammy said: “We will do all we can to defend the fundamental rights the public depends on from attacks by the Conservatives.”

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