There were widespread calls for the inquiry to have statutory powers and, on 30 August 2023, it was announced that the inquiry will have statutory powers and will be chaired by a judge.
UK Government 30 August 2023 - Legal powers given to Lucy Letby inquiry - 30 August 2023 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
The government announcement states that the Secretary of State took this decision after listening to the views of families of the victims. The move gives the inquiry legal powers which include compelling witnesses to give evidence under oath.
The Inquiry chair has yet to be appointed and Terms of Reference will have to be agreed and published.