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Democracy, the Southwark way

Southwark makes it into the Rotten Boroughs. Again.

The latest issue of the Private Eye has another entry for Southwark (wherelse but the Rotten Boroughs section) which reads:

"Labour group chief whip, Cllr Dan Garfield, has resigned from the council after being found guilty of a (second) offence of beating his wife, fellow councillor Rebecca Lury. He was given 40 days' community service. Last year he was cautioned for a similar offence, which was covered up. Councillors are questioning the judgement of council leader Peter John for allowing Garfield to continue in office, following previous complaints from female councillors about his behaviour. Since 2011, several Labour members in SOuthwark have been suspended or made to resign for offences such as benefit fraud, teenage sexual grooming and domestic violence. Another councillor is believed to have stood down over allegations of a hands-on, Lord Rennard-style approach to female colleagues."

There was also the curious case of Claire Maugham, former Chaucer Ward councillor, who resigned (or was pushed?) because of her husband's public critique of the Labour council's practices.

Three years ago, Cllr Anood Al-Samerai, a Lib Dem, was first suspended then fully investigated because she dared publicly quote a figure which was already in public domain. Also three years ago, Cllr Peter John happily accepted one £1,600-worth ticket for the opening of the Olympics, from LendLease for himself, for a 'business event' and another ticket of the same value, from the same company, for his partner, who, at the same time and at the same place went not to a business event but a leisure one.

All of the above may well be what Cllr John tends to call 'crap journalism' (where 'crap'='reporting facts') or a final wake-up call?



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