102. Deputy John Lahart asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the position regarding the ongoing review into the Stardust fire; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [47350/17]
Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): The Government established an independent Stardust Assessment to evaluate the claim of new and updated evidence presented by the Stardust Victims’ Committee relating to the Stardust tragedy. Judge McCartan’s assessment report was formally submitted to my Department on 17 October 2017. The report was considered by my Department and was sent to the Office of the Attorney General for advices.
I brought the report to the Cabinet meeting on 7 November 2017, following receipt of those advices. The report was accepted by the Government and furnished to the Stardust Victims’ Committee immediately afterwards.
I published the report later on 7 November and also laid the report before the Houses of the Oireachtas on the same date, given that the assessment process was initiated on foot of a Dáil Motion in January.
I would like to express my gratitude to Judge McCartan for the work he undertook in preparing his report. The judge was nominated by the relatives as a person they trusted and I am grateful to him for his willingness to undertake this important public service.
Having carefully considered the two previous independent reports on the Stardust tragedy and considered all material made available to him, Judge McCartan concluded that no further new enquiry is warranted.
The Stardust Fire was undoubtedly one of the greatest tragedies in the history of this country and the Government established this independent assessment process to ensure that all available evidence, including any new material that may have come to light, could be assessed as a matter of urgency. I acknowledge the terrible pain and loss of the relatives of the victims and the fact that the report does not come to the conclusion that they would have wished for.