Wednesday, 4 July 2012

The Rotten State of Barnet

Something is very very wrong in Barnet. I am sure you have read on other blogs about the questioning of Helen Michael by the Special Investigations Unit of Scotland Yard over the poster she put up regarding parking in Barnet. It appears that the complainant is Mr Nick Walkley, Chief Executive of Barnet. What I find utterly incomprehensible is that just days after we have been told there is a massive black hole in the Met Police Budget and just over 3 weeks away from the biggest ever policing event in the capital, that someone in the Met has deemed this worthy of investing so much time in such a trivial non issue. I am deeply worried that the police are being used for political purposes. At the recent Brunswick Park by election the Conservatives put out a leaflet that drew the following comments from Mr Walkley as reported in the Barnet Bugle

The Returning Officer’s concerns with the leaflet related to the following statement.
“Following a successful campaign by your local Conservatives, parking will remain free at the Ward’s two car parks”
No such decision had been published by the Council on this matter and, as that is the only decision which can be relevant for these purposes, the statement was incorrect. In that regard, he requested that no further leaflets were distributed, or otherwise published, incorporating this particular statement or any other which might convey or imply that the Council has confirmed a decision in relation to free parking at the car parks in the ward.
The concern was that a wrong perception may arise that the Council has assisted others with regard to publicity and, as such, acted contrary to the law regarding local authority publicity during the “purdah” period.
So we clearly have a set of dual standards operating in Barnet and I, for one, am utterly disgusted. Are the bloggers the next on the target list?

1 comment:

  1. hear hear, Mr Reasonable. Acting on one publication and not the other clearly suggests to any reasonable (ha) person that there is political bias here, and the pressure on Helen Michael is grossly disproportionate.