Police and council leaders in Birmingham today voiced dissatisfaction over the Government's decision to appoint former anti-terrorism chief Peter Clarke to investigate the Trojan Horse allegations.
West Midlands Police's Ch Cons Chris Sims called the appointment "desperately unfortunate".
– Chief Constable Chris Sims, West Midlands Police
This is a desperately unfortunate appointment. Peter Clarke has many qualities but people will inevitably draw unwarranted conclusions from his former role as National Co-ordinator for Counter Terrorism.
I am a strong supporter of open and inclusive education for all children in Birmingham and across the West Midlands and am committed to the process adopted by Birmingham City Council with educational and social inclusion at its heart.
Meanwhile, city council leader Sir Albert Bore warned having Mr Clarke as an independent investigator risked undermining the investigations already being carried out.
– Birmingham City Council leader Sir Albert Bore
At first sight, today’s announcement of an Independent Commissioner is a missed opportunity to strengthen our co-ordinated approach to addressing these very serious matters.
Peter Clarke will need to give careful consideration to building a strong relationship with us and, given his recent counter-terrorism responsibilities in London, ensure that his investigation does not undermine the confidence of our communities.