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Dublin: 6 °C Wednesday 26 February, 2020

Savita's husband will not speak to expert heading HSE inquiry

The solicitor for Praveen Halappanavar has reiterated that his client will not cooperate with the inquiry into his wife’s controversial death and said there must be a public inquiry.

Image: Peter Morrison/AP/Press Association Images

THE SOLICITOR FOR the husband of Savita Halappanvar has said this morning that his client does not intend to cooperate with the HSE inquiry into his wife’s death.

Despite the government announcing that the three doctors at the Galway hospital where she died would be stepping down from the inquiry, Gerard O’Donnell said that his client would not be cooperating with or speaking to the independent head of the inquiry.

“My client is just not happy with the HSE investigating its own actions,” he told RTÉ’s Morning Ireland programme.

Praveen Halappanavar has also raised concerns with the medical records that were kept by Galway University Hospital where his wife died last month after suffering a miscarriage.

Halappanavar and Savita’s family claim that she was repeatedly denied an abortion at the hospital.

O’Donnell said that his client would not be meeting with the head of the inquiry Sir Sabaratnum Arulkumaran as this would be ”acquiescing” with an investigation he does not agree with.

The solicitor also repeated his client’s call for a public inquiry into Savita’s death saying that the way he and his wife were treated should be “put out in the public domain”.

He said they would continue to press upon the government to establish a public inquiry.

O’Donnell also said that his client had given a detailed statement to gardaí yesterday which he said was “extremely difficult” for the grieving husband.

Separately, the pro life senator Rónán Mullen has said that he does not agree with Sir Sabaratnum’s appointment as head of the inquiry, saying that his pro-abortion views – expressed in a 2009 paper – undermine the inquiry into Savita’s death.

Mullen said: “If the presence of Galway-based consultants was deemed to taint the perceived impartiality of the inquiry, leading to their removal, the proposed chairman’s history of advocacy for abortion must surely injure the inquiry’s credibility to an even greater degree.”

Read: X Case Dáil debate told: ‘Protecting lives of pregnant women the only civilised choice’

Read: Reilly: Savita inquiry must be expedited to ensure no risk remains at GUH

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Hugh O'Connell

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