FEAR OF legal action from multinational agrichemical giants probably explains the failure of successive UK governments to deal with the issue of OP poisoning, according to Lib-Dem MP Paul Tyler.

“Governments are always sensitive to the way they may be attacked by multinational corporations,” Mr Tyler suggested at a press conference in the House of Commons on Tues (Jan 25).

“They probably thought the victims were less important legally than the chemical companies.”

In the new All Party OP Group report, Mr Tyler said: “All too often now, the most effective research is done by those who have an interest in the product concerned – rather than being done by the regulatory, authorising or legislative authorities.

“So you reach the point where the minister or civil servants in any western country – and particularly Britain – asking for advice about the scientific and medical background to a product or how it has been tested is dependent upon people who have or have had a commercial interest in the product.

“There is nobody who has the integrity and independence to be able to say to a minister that he or she has absolutely no commercial interest in an OP product whatsoever but they are right up to date with the science and can say yes or no to the approval of that product.”