The Head of the Civil Service David Sterling has spoken of his sadness at the death of Sir Anthony Hart.
He said: “Sir Anthony was a hugely respected figure in Northern Ireland, a man of great integrity. He enjoyed a long and distinguished legal career and had a reputation as someone unflinching in his pursuit of the truth and scrupulous in his analysis of evidence.
“It was those characteristics that saw him appointed in 2012 by the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister as chair of the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry.
“I met Sir Anthony recently in connection with his work on the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry and I had planned to meet him again. We owe him a huge debt of gratitude for his work as chair of the Inquiry and his commitment to helping the victims of historical institutional abuse.
“His passing will be a great shock for everyone associated with the Inquiry and I pass on my sympathies to his family.”