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Prime Minister orders investigation following Anna Klonowski report
THE Prime Minister has promised to look into claims made in the recent Anna Klonowski report.
Wirral West MP Esther McVey told David Cameron during PM's questions that the "violence and intimidation” revealed in the report was "shocking."
The Klonowski inquiry looked into the claims of whistleblower Martin Morton, a former Wirral social services employee, who was bullied and forced out of his job after revealing systematic financial abuse of vulnerable people in council care.
The council has since apologised to Mr Morton and says it has set in place a series of changes in how the authority works to deal with the problems highlighted by the report.
Miss McVey blamed Wirral's ruling Labour administration for the problems.
During Prime Minister's Questions she asked: "Will the PM as a matter of urgency look into the recent shocking report into allegations of overcharging of vulnerable adults on the Wirral and also claims of violence and intimidation under a Labour-led council, making sure that those responsible are brought to account and never work again in adult social services?"
Mr Cameron agreed, saying that while regulators have a difficult job, better scrutiny is vital.
He said: "I will certainly look at the report - it is clearly a very serious matter."
He also promised to pass on the issue to relevant ministers, adding that new regulators are facing difficulties.
Mr Cameron added: "It is really important that inspections are thorough and targeted ... clearly there is a need for this on Merseyside."
Miss McVey said: "We now know that the PM takes this very seriously. I was determined to take this right to the top.
"There is a question of legal action, which makes it difficult to comment further on matters which may be prejudicial. But some of the allegations are horrendous."
Wirral's chief executive Jim Wilkie said: "We have already begun looking at the implications of Anna Klonowski's report with the police and will co-operate fully in any police investigations.
"We have also responded to the Care Quality Commissions's most recent inspection with a detailed action plan and have improved our services to safeguard people.
"In addition a Peer Review is being carried out independently which has identified that we are making progress.
"I can only repeat that any actions, which can be taken, will be taken to ensure these failings are not repeated."
The Prime Minister's pledge comes as Wirral council leader Cllr Steve Foulkes fights for his political life following calls from leaders of both opposition groups for him to be ousted over the fall-out from the Anna Klonowski report.
Earlier this week Tory leader Cllr Jeff Green called for Cllr Foulkes to step down over the way the report has been dealt with.
This has now been followed by a demand from Lib-Dem leader Cllr Tom Harney for Cllr Foulkes "to do the decent thing and resign."
The two groups united in a vote would out-number the Labour administration by 37 to 29.
Cllr Foulkes will face two votes of no confidence when the full council meets on February 13.